1918 was the year the store began. Stephen Licence and Family moved to Belleville from Toronto and established a bicycle store which is now nearing 100 years of service to the families of the Quinte Area.
Over the years, the store became a major supplier of sport goods and hobby supplies as well as becoming a wholesale outlet. During the years from 1918 till 2015, the store has had five moves: On Front Street – #333, 17 years, #299 – 35 years, #323- 30 years (now the Empire Theatre), #357 – 1 year (temporary), #288 – (West Side) 13 years and counting.
The business was incorporated in 1947 and became Stephen Licence Limited. In 1952, Mr. Licence passed away and the store manager, Alex McGlashon purchased the store from the estate. After 5years as owner/operator, he decided to retire.
Son-in law, Gerry Bongard and wife Carole (Nee Licence) decided to bring the store back into the family.
And so, after 58 years under the Bongard control, the store is still a strong entity not only for the Downtown Belleville, but also for several miles in all directions. The merchandise mix has changed to accommodate our market. Our primary commodity is service and smiles.
Our main commodity is bicycles and all related items, required for safe riding and repair service, skating accessories and years of experience custom sharpening. We also sell special clothing that harmonizes with other activities as well as a good selection of “Tilley” Hats.
A short list of items available in the hobby and children’s section are plastic kits and paint, model, trains, rocketry, leather craft, puzzles, games, paint-by-number, Radio Flyer, Kettler wagons and tricycles, stamp and coin supplies, flags of Canada, Provinces and of the world and as well as many other surprises!
At this time, Gerry is still here, going on 59 years. Kevin Bongard has made it through 35 years and plans on several more. Together, with a competent and friendly staff, we hope to add many more years to our long history.