A few years ago I left my bicycle locked securely at Wrexham General railway station.

Big mistake! I came back and it was stolen!

I reported it, the police extracted CCTV of the three men who stole it, but only from a surveillance camera at the far end of the car park: the security device immediate above the bike rack hadn’t recorded footage.  They never caught them to my knowledge and I certainly never got my bike back, all because the security camera that could have identified them securely wasn’t working or recording for whatever reason.

My evaulation: Arriva Trains Wales = Useful as a Mud-Flavoured Macaroon!

Arriva Trains Wales have now gone the way of all flesh (and privatised railway companies) and Virgin too thank goodness (the other train company who ‘delivered’ services between Wrexham and Chester but who denied it on Twitter when I complained). I presume Transport for Wales are now responsible for the station, but I’m never trusting my beautiful fold-up bike ‘Doris’ to being left at that god-forsaken location in case she gets stolen too!

I’m not the only one, despite c. 16 spaces for bikes that could serve people pedaling in from across Wrexham to the railway station each day to commute to Chester or elsewhere, only one person seems to regularly lock their bike there. Instead, when I commute by bike and train, I do what everyone else seems to do: I take my bike with me on the train and lock it securely at my workplace in Chester.

But I’ve found another solution for those rare instances where I have no choice but to use the bike racks at Wrexham. Last summer, I acquired a bike for free. It had been languishing in a garage. So I cleaned it, oiled it, adjusted the brakes, and I painted it with a fresh Archaeodeath livery. Hence, I can now leave a bike at Wrexham General for those train journeys where I’m not commuting to Chester. If the bike gets stolen, more fool them: it is worthless!

So recently, when going down to Cardiff for the Offa’s Dyke Research and Conservation Forum, the first and last legs of my journey were on my trusty steed: Archaeodeath! Slow but steady, it did the trick.

There might be a further upside. Maybe one day people will see the bike, like the phrase ‘Archaeodeath’, go online, see some posts they like, then decide to learn more about archaeologies of death and memory. You never know! Free academic advertising and transport wrapped into one two-wheeled parcel!