It’s fine to tell people to use their LBS. BUT… take a wander into your LBS tomorrow morning (you’d not have been able to go today as LBS are almost all shut at the times most working people are able to go and shop, such as after 5.30pm in the week or on Sundays) and see what bikes they have, and report back here with the price on their cheapest available bike in a size L (or 58 or 19″ as depends on their sizing descriptor) that could safely go up and down Helvellyn. Not medium (we’re not selling a noobie a bike that doesn’t actually fit are we ?) Not an extra small as the noobie in question isn’t a Diddy Man from Knotty Ash.
I just looked at the web site for 18 Bikes (local for me) and… well your noobie is certainly not getting anything in stock their for £605, even without the helmet).
I’m absolutely not a fan of Halfords, and do try to avoid as best I can.
But for a noobie, I see the appeal- you can go and poke around their Web site 1st to get a feel for £££, and are open on a Sunday to go shopping when not at work or collecting the kids from school and making their tea.
And many noobies are not I’d guess looking to drop a four figure sum on something they don’t know if they’ll like or not.
2nd hand if a noobie with no mtb knowledge is a complete minefield even with a STW guide ! How do you know it’s not twisted, has hidden / concealed crack, or nicked. (You’re a noobie remember- you’ve not got the experience of seeing 7 different mates Crackandfails broken at the bottom bracket yet). New, even Halfords new, gives a warranty and a half chance of being able to hold them to it.
All you folks banging on about using (or losing LBS): how many are riding British built bikes (made, not just badged up), or drive British built cars made with British made steel ? Not many I bet. So what’s different about the LBS to all the other local British industries that most have evidently not supported?