Tom Donhou came to the realization that he was destined to build bicycles after cycling halfway around the world from his home town of Norwich in the UK. One night, camping by the side of the road, just west of Beijing with coal trucks rushing past, he concluded that it was the next logical step in a life predominantly spent atop a bicycle.
In 2011, Tom won the ‘Best in Show’ award at the UK’s handmade bicycle show, Bespoked Bristol. It was pinned upon his mustard-yellow, belt-driven, fully fendered town bike that was the inspiration for an entry into the 2012 show, commissioned by a customer who wanted a machine with a similar aesthetic and functionality. The bikes share a similar silhouette, but upon closer inspection reveal individual differences such as the bi-laminate head tube configuration and a Sturmey Archer 70mm drum brake in the front wheel.
While I was unable to make it along to the 2012 Bespoked Bristol show, I was able to catch up with Tom in person. It was an honor to meet one of the United Kingdom’s new breed of custom frame builders that are helping to continue the country’s long cycling tradition. Check out his website for more of his builds.