MOST business analysts would agree any successful organisation needs an all singing, all dancing website.
Try telling that to Bolton’s only non-dealer affiliated specialist motorcycle maintenance man, Andy Speak.
The 54-year-old former Tonge High School pupil is throwback to the days of motor vehicle engineering when experienced mechanics could fix virtually anything — without the need to plug the vehicle into a computer.
A Google search for his business, A & S Motorcycles, will reveal its location in Plevna Street, off Bury New Road, Bolton, in one of two railway arches, but little else.
But he says that is of little importance because word-of-mouth recommendations among the small but dedicated motorcycle community around Bolton are worth any number of Facebook “likes” or positive Twitter tweets.
Mr Speak will turn his hand to repairing any bike and has recently restored a 76-year-old auto cycle — a bicycle with an engine — manufactured by The Sun, a company based in Aston Birmingham and which closed in 1961.
It has two-stroke 98cc Villiers engine and purrs beautifully thanks to his efforts.
Mr Speak, who completed his apprenticeship as a maintenance fitter at textile machinery maker Platt Saco Lowell in Bradley Fold in his late teens, said: “I bought it because I needed the tyres, which are difficult to get hold of.
“But I ended up getting it going. It’s an amazing machine.
“People come to me because they know I can fix their bikes, whatever they are.
“There are other places where you can get your bike fixed, but the outlets which sell new bikes will prefer to fix only the brand they sell.
“Here, I’ve got my lathe and my press and I can get the job done.”
Mr Speak opened his workshop 32 years ago, just a stone’s throw from where he was brought up, when then occupant Jeff’s Auto Electrics moved to its current location in Bury Old Road.
Before that the distinctive railway arch location was the home of Michael Sexton’s wood yard.
He said: “I am told he dug the arch, which had been full of rubble, out on his own with a spade.
“It’s a perfect place for me to be and I have no plans to move anywhere else.”