Editors Note: This article is courtesy of Peter Szwed Szwedowski. He is a Hope sponsored rider from Poland and he was lucky enough to get a guided tour of the Hope Tech facility
During a UK visit, I went to Barnoldswick for a Hope factory tour. I’m Peter Szwed Szwedowski, a Hope team rider for third season now and I was delighted to be invited to their headquarters.
Barnoldswick is a small town in Lancashire, where one cannot miss the Rolls Royce factory. Hope’s two founders previously worked at Rolls Royce where they were influenced by their standard of quality and excellence. Hope HQ is divided into two parts, the first is smaller offices and social rooms, the other section hosts much larger production halls. The visit began with a reception or a room devoted to the history of the brand.
It is hard to believe but the first Hope disc brake Hope was made in 1989. Being from Eastern Europe, it got me thinking about the gap between Eastern Europe and Western Europe. But my pessimism was quickly appeased by my host Alan, who commented, “Look what you’ve done great progress in such a short time.” Alan Weatherill has worked at Hope from the first day, and he knows everything about this company. It was cool that we was my guide as he provided deep insight in every product the company creates. Office space did not occupy much space as much of the are was allocated to share, social facilities. We felt like we were in a pleasant pub while in the lounge area.
Hope’s backyard made the biggest impression on me. It’s hard for me to describe it in words because I was speechless when I saw this incredible pump track. It’s more work of art than a bicycle track and bbq place as it featured a brook next to pump track! It was indeed very sad for me that 3 days earlier I broke my collarbone and I wasn’t able to ride it.