When my Dad was a young man he was an apprentice at the Gas Company. Living in Dulwich he had to cycle to Greenwich every day. When he married my mother they moved into the flat below where his parents lived.
Money was tight and he made a special box so that the weekly wages could be put aside to cover the bills. Coal, rent and bike repairs! A puncture was a major trauma and Dad became a great expert on finding holes in the inner tube and patching it up. His bike was his workhorse and his pride and joy.
After a few years Dad and Mum had a son. As a little boy he would stand by the gate waiting for Dad to cycle up the hill after his hard day at work. When he was a little older he was allowed to run down the hill to meet him. Dad would lift him up and sit him on the saddle and push the bike up the hill to the gate.
When we left London and moved to Kent my Dad still cycled. This time he cycled from our house to the station, about 6 miles each way. The money tin had long gone but money was still tight and punctures were still a major trauma. Dad continued to use his bike for many years afterwards until he inherited some money and got his first car.