Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Royal Wedding


You may well ask yourself what the wedding of Kate Middleton and William Windsor has to do with cycle touring? Unfortunately unbeknown to the British Crown, Spezi, Europe's biggest and best, probably only special cycle exhibition will be held in Germersheim, Rheinland Pfalz near Speyer on April 30 and May 1 this year. It's the mecca for folding bikes, trikes, tandems and work bikes in western Europe. You could use the bank holiday to nip over to drool over some lovely hardware, meet interesting people (me and her) and taste the local wines and beers.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

New Trends in Local Cycling

Similarly to the pothole service offered nationally in the UK by the CTC, German cities offer reporting services to let cyclists tell the appropriate authorities when a road or cycle path is blocked by rubbish or needs repairing. In Mannheim the city council offers a cyclists' hotline. Across the river in Rheinland-Pfalz Speyer and Worms have volunteers as interface to the various departments. The more rural counties in the Rhein-Neckar metropolitan area have yet to create these positions or find a volunteer, but according to the S├╝dhessen Morgen of 11th March 2011 moves are afoot to increase the importance of cycling as a means of commuting and some mechanism will be set up to allow cyclists to report deficiencies. This all to the good, especially when cyclists use the hotlines to report deficiencies rather than moaning on Stammtische as they are given to do.

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