I've just taken the plunge -- and ordered a bike off the Evans Cycles website.
For no charge, I am having it delivered to their Fulham branch. Which means that when I go to collect it, I can buy my mudguards and a pack rack while I am there -- and then I can ride it home. Woo-hoo! Hopefully it should arrive within the next 5 days.
Unfortunately, I am unable to take advantage of the Government's Ride-2-Work scheme, which would have entitled me to get this bike for half-price. This is because my employer has temporarily stopped processing bicycle orders. I contacted our HR Department yesterday to find out if they were going to re-open it and was told "Yes, sometime in the next six months".
Obviously, I can't wait that long. I need a new bike now, not some indeterminate date later in the year. So I'm going with the full-price option (although, technically, this is less than full-price because it's last year's model) and hoping that my employer doesn't announce any time soon that it's re-opening the scheme. (They don't backdate; I already checked.)
Knowing my luck that's exactly what will happen, but I'll just notch that up to Murphy's Law.
But why should that worry me? I'm going to be riding a shiny new silver bike with disc brakes and gears that work! I can't wait.