29 June, 2014

The ecotax renunciation threatens the Angers tramway second line

L'abandon de l'écotaxe par le gouvernement français va priver celui-ci de ressources pour le financement de projets de transports urbains, dont celui de la seconde ligne de tram d'Angers.

The last Angers municipal campaign focused on the neccessary revision of the lengh of the second tramway line. And that was appropriate because the renunciation, by the French government, to the "ecotax" implies a loss of around € 800 millions. That money was due to be used for the financing of transport schemes all over France and, among 16 trolley lines, there is the Angers project.

The allocation the city planned to receive from the French state could
be reduced and even paid out (if it is ever paid) later. Will the town be able to finance the difference? Is the tram-train project foreseen between Trélazé and Angers also affected by such an outcome? The second tramway line should link the Belle-Beille and Monplaisir disctrict with a connection to downtown at Molière square (in the new Angers mayor platform).

But Belle-Beille is, above all, the Angers campus where thousands and thousands of students go every day. With the cancellation, or at best the postponement of the new line construction, the attractiveness of Angers for students could also be affected. The city could regret that such a route was not be implemented first.

27 June, 2014

Her Majesty subjects, fond of "la Petite Reine" in Anjou Velo Vintage

Anjou Vélo Vintage a acquis en quelques années une réputation qui dépasse de beaucoup les frontières de l'Anjou et de la France. Les sujets de Sa Gracieuse Majesté semblent tout particulièrement apprécier cet événement qui met en scène le mythe toujours vivant de la petite reine. 

Anjou Vélo Vintage, whose prologue has been given on June 27th and will last until the 29th throughout the
routes from Angers to Saumur, is year after year becoming an international event. "Anjou Vélo Vintage appeals to English people because it represents a real French touch event", points out Thierry Gintrand, the communication manager of the Conseil général de Maine-et-Loire whose previous president, Christophe Béchu, is, since April 2014, the Angers mayor. The English medias, but not only them (Spanish and German press have also dedicated coverages to the initiative), has recently reminded to theirs readers what Anjou Vélo Vintage was.

The French characteristic of the event is surely a reason of its success as desmonstrates an article in Dailypeloton.com, an English website specialized in cycling news. Describing that race, totally without competitive spirit, the editor, Mark Sharon, reminds that the Saturday programme consists in "a set of criteriums taht will bring back to life a type of racing that dominated French sporting entertainement". In order to convince its readers about the Frenchess of the Anjou Velo Vintage, the Daily Peloton publishes a lot of pictures shot during the 2013 edition which testifies that standpoint.

Credit Pictures : Mark Sharon Dailypeloton.com
The dresscode is certainly the secret of that "ride in the past" (title of an article published in the Financial Times. Moustaches (genuine or fakes), caps (especially wore bu English participants) and braces (for men) as white socks, hats and skirts (for women) give to the foreign tourists the feeling they are immersed in the heart of the French soul. For the English, Anjou boundaries are larger than they are in fact : a male participant wearing the typical Brittany clothes is described as wearing "the traditional local garb". But, given Brittany and Pays de la Loire could merge, is that important?

25 June, 2014

"A night at the opera" by 150 students of the Angers college of music at the Grand Théâtre

Le Conservatoire à rayonnement régional d'Angers clôturera sa saison 2013-2014 avec "A night at the opera", un spectacle auquel prendront part 150 élèves musiciens, danseurs et comédiens de cette institution très importante dans la vie culturelle angevine qui dispense un enseignement de qualité, mais très exigeant. Ils se produiront les 27 et 28 juin à 20 h 30 sur la scène du Grand Théâtre d'Angers.

Sixty dansers, ten instrumentalists and eighty choristers, all students at the Angers college of music will perform their end of the year show, "A night at the opera", at the Grand Théâtre on June 27th and 28th. The show will put on stage the famous studio album recorded in 1975 by the British rock group Queen. That album, the most expensive album ever recorded at the time of its release, had been voted by the public and praised by music publications as one ot the Queens's finest works. That album took itself its name from the Marx Brothers film A night at the opera.

In that album, the Queen is at the zenith of its art, with Freddy Mercury's vocal eccentricities and a baroque and pompous music where instrumentalist experiences work together. Bohemian Rhapsody is the emblematic title of that rock opera ended by the God save the queen, as a wink to the identity of that band so majestic... and so British.

The show, staged at 8.30 pm, is the result of the work of its participants in the Angers music college which dispenses high quality education in music, danse and theatre to 1,200 pupils supervised by 80 very qualified teachers. Very dynamic pole of the Angers cultural life, the college gives to its public a very complete and demanding education where personal involvement leads to the pleasure of a collective achievement, in 2014 "A night at the opera".

23 June, 2014

Angers will host the first connected items city

Angers accueillera dans les mois qui viennent la première "cité de l'objet connectés", dont le marché, montres, pèse-personne, domotique, est à l'aube d'un vaste développement. Le choix de la ville est le fruit d'une décision gouvernementale, mais surtout d'une long travail de préparation locale effectué par les industriels de la filière au premier rang desquels le groupe Angevin Eolane. 

After months and even years of bad economic years, has Angers at last lifted its head? Maybe with the announcement, by the ministry of economy, Arnaud Montebourg on June 18th, that Angers had been choosen to be the place where the first French connected items city will take place. That decision is part of a plan included in a series of 34 others which aims at the re-industrialization of the country.

Angers would become the French bridgehead in connected items in a country which itself strives after the first rand in the world in that field. Remote controlled houses, electronic tags or mobile phones giving informations about the healt of his or her user are some of the devices Angers would become the first France frontwindow. In fact, the choice of Angers was made easy for the government given that local Angers companies led by Eolane, already head of the Loire Electronic Applications Valley community, had for months worked with the national decision-makers of that sector.

The future city will be set up on the Valéo site in the Orgemont district. According to a three years plan, 15 millions euros will be invested on a 16,000 m2 area which wil include offices, tools for prototypes, an industrial innovation showroom and all the necessary materials to the manufacture at large scale of finished products. Fifty persons would, in a first period, work on the scheme. If the stakes are national (the attractiveness of the country, the start up stimulation), there are also local. Angers, whose mayor, Christophe Béchu, recently found regrattable it can't be identified on a map, could strenghten its fame and activate its growth as employment.

21 June, 2014

The Angers castle in English territory for a while

Le chateau d'Angers retrouvera, le 22 juin, pour un après-midi, des accents anglais. Leur présence dans cette enceinte est cette fois littéraire et non militaire. La bibliothèque anglophone propose aux Angevins de découvrir littérature et English way of life. With an nice cup of tea?

For a while, the Angers castle will find again English accent on June 22nd. The English Language Library in Angers (Ellia) offers an "English afternoon" on that Sunday. If the programme is mainly literary, with readings and theatrical workshops, it is not just that. Famous English games like badminton or croquet or pony rides "and other amusements" are planned by Ellia. After lunch at 2.30 pm, "Revelations through Readings", with Peter Law, will be the appetizer of the event. Then will follow "Where the Wild Things Are", a theatre workshop English-French dedicated to youngs (4.00 pm). Later, Olivia Ross and Matthew Tennyson will introduce "Shakespeare and the Pope".

The castle was, at several periods, part of English history. During the XIIth century the Anjou province was part of the Angevin Empire of the Plantagenets kings of England and the monument was not anly longer a political centre because the English court didn't come to Angers. During the XIIIth century, when the Province was included in the French Kingdom, English tried to take over the fortress which still contains the graffiti of England prisoners. Later, the first Duke of Wellington came in the castle, then an army academy, for training. In a twist of fate, he later took part in the defeat of Napoléon at Waterloo.

17 June, 2014

"Urban Islands" in town for summer

Durant tout l'été, plusieurs artistes prendront possession de lieux emblématiques de la ville pour les transformer en espaces culturels insularisés. Le château, la tour Sain-Aubin, l'abbaye du Ronceray et le Jardin des Plantes ne seront plus des mon
uments, mais des oeuvres d'art... monumentales. 

If most of the time, cultural works may only be seen in museums, the 2014 summer in Angers is going to break with that principle. Five emblematic places of the city will host, during the exact summer season, June 21st-September 21st, the production of five artists. The title of that initiative, Urban Islands, unveils the aim of its sponsors : to set up in frequented places, the castle, the Saint-Aubin tower, the botanical garden and the Ronceray abbey-church, shapes and colors which will revisit those momuments and areas and to isolate them from the rest of the town as if they were in an island.

With the exhibition of Etienne Bossut, a sculptor settled in Rennes, the Angers castle is linked to contemporary housing thanks to items used for current constructions. The monument already enlivened by different medicinal gardens, will through the items of Etienne Bossut, strengthen its links with the surrounding town. The Saint-Aubin tower, another island in the city, will not be used as a simple repository for works of art but will be part of those because Nicolas Guiet, a painter from Paris, considers that the canvas is as important as the painting. So he will redesign the Saint-Aubin tower serious and monolithic architecture. A third Angers monument, the Ronceray abbey-church will receive Elsa Tomkiowak whose shapes and colors diffract the natural light caught by the building. Because of their presence, the sight on the place is completely different.

An open air space, the botanical garden, will dedicate two of its areas to the works of Katarina Kudelova and Pierre-Alexandre Remy. The first, a Maine-et-Loire artist, with "Party Lunch", will set up her works in the aviary of the garden. Mrs Kedelova often includes animals in her works because they constitute a (sad?) mirror of mankind. The aviaries are completly redesigned as artistic sceneries. In the middle of the pond within that garden, Pierre-Alexandre Remy deploys a colored structure which multiplies the reflections of the surroundings making of the water itself a new painting.

All these exhibitions separate the viewers from the urban space around, as if he stood in an island where culture is the unique crop.

16 June, 2014

The Wallaby's, the Australian atmosphere on Foch boulevard

La galaxie des pubs anglophones d'Angers va bientôt accueillir un nouveau membre avec le Wallaby's. Situé boulevard Foch, l'enseigne a été ouverte par Hervé Guérinel, qui avait déjà lancé à Angers et à Rennes, plusieurs pubs irlandais. Avec l'entrée de la France dans la coupe du monde de football, le Wallaby's, issu d'une culture où le rugby est plutôt la référence, a réussi vendredi dernier son premier essai.

The Angers community of English speaking countries pubs and bars will include in the days to come a new member : the Wallaby's, an Australian place located on Foch boulevard. His manager, Hervé Guérinel, is pleased : a opening test has been successfully passed last Friday with the new staff of 6 persons having in common a fluency in English. The Wallaby's is not for Mr. Guerinel the first try. The man, formerly settled in Rennes, had opened there an Irish pub, since sold but still alive, the O'Connell, then, in Angers, he repeated the experience with the James Joyce, face to the Congress centre, itself sold, but still alive.

"With a 30 000 students population, the Wallaby's will be attractive" predicts Hervé Guérinel who starts there with a new concept. "Originally, I wanted to join the Australian franchise Oz which has already several pubs in Paris. But I'm rather independant and I wanted to lean on my own experience. With the Wallaby's we have worked, with Patrick Letendre, a specialist in the painting design of pubs, on the nobility of materials". The colors, the items and the furniture produce an atmosphere both foreign and original, a mix of travels universe and desertic areas. On the 300 m2, two main spaces will soon be settled : one for the usual customers and another one for the companies looking for a private room for meetings or lunch, closed to be finished.

"Gradually, our beverage and food carte will include Australian brands and meals", says Mr. Guérinel. The Wallaby's owner, 50 years old, has fulfilled his career in the hotel and restaurant business. After a hotel school in Brittany, he worked in famous places like the Bristol or the Plazza in Paris. After a come back in his native land, he came in Angers where he set up Eat'Aly and the Cuccina Cantina, a culinary workshop near the Congress centre. If the Wallaby's refers to a culture where rugby is one of the most visible characteristics, the place wants also "surf" on the current soccer World Cup. The first match of the French team was a good test. As for the Wallaby's.

15 June, 2014

First Angers evening of the soccer 2014 world cup : the match before the test

Le premier match de l'équipe de France en coupe du monde a attiré plusieurs dizaines d'habitants dans les cafés et terrasses du centre ville. Le score sans appel des Bleus mais également l'humeur des supporters angevins peuvent inspirer confiance pour la suite des événements. Les rues se sont rapidement vidées ensuite en raison d'un tout autre examen

The first match of the France soccer team against Honduras in the 2014 world cup gathered some Angers inhabitants in the pubs and cafes of the down town center. Flags, three coloured perruques and signs made their first appearance. Is France at the beginning of a long series of matches in Brasil? Its entrance in the competition has started ready well and Angers supporters, sat some in the bars, but most of them in the terraces or in the streets, may indicate that they are confident in the opportunities of the national team.

As soon as the final whistle, horns were heared in the streets and may be some bangers were fired. But the hustle and bustle didn't last very long. After a few minutes after the end of the game, customers left the streets and cafes owners cleaned up their front sides. And suddenly, Angers centre came back to quietness. On Monday morning, hundreds of thousands of high schoool students face the first baccalaureat test. After the significant victory of "Les Bleus", they may start the end of their school year with... philosophy!

13 June, 2014

The Maine as a runners water

Le club de natation Aquarius organise le 14 juin deus descentes de la Maine. Après "Tout Angers bouge", il faudrait que "Tout Angers nage" ou au moins supporte les nageurs.

After the "All Angers is moving" sport event which took place on the last week end, the Maine river will host on June 14 some courageous swimmers as soon as 7.30 am on the Tabarly platform for the 14th edition of the Maine descent! It is not sure that, at that hour, "All Angers will swim" especially with lower temperatures. Two trials are planned. From 9.00 : a competition will gather players who regularly exercise under the constraint of a chronometer. At 1.00, the Aquarius organizes a leisure trial without any competition mind whose registration fees will benefit to heart surgery. 

That help is in line with the philosophy of that sport society. "Our goal is not to train competitors in swimming. Before all, it want to be a place of socialization and blossoming for everyone in the four swims : butterfly stroke, breaststroke, backstroke and crawl", says Aquarius on its website which also discloses that "it pays attention to the fact every swimmer be alerted about gestures of rescue, given swimming pool accidents are more and more numerous" adds Aquarius. The swim in the Maine is a kind of completion of numerous trainings in swimming pools of Aquarius members. 

11 June, 2014

Young Angevins who rally

La place du Ralliement mettra en valeur samedi prochain les initiatives de jeunes angevins dans le domaine de la culture, de la solidarité ou du civisme. Si leur engagement est profitable à la collectivité, il est aussi enrichissant pour eux-mêmes. Ils partageront leurs idées et leurs expériences lors de la 5ème Journée de valorisation de la jeunesse. 

The fifth edition of the Youth promotion day (Journée de valorisation de la jeunesse) will take place next June 14th on Ralliement square from 10.30 an to 8.00 pm. The event aims to promote the involvment of young Angevins in the life of their city in very different fields ranging from culture to international exchanges. Since 2010, Angers city, several associations and the young Angevins city council join their efforts to display the projects in which these are involved.

All day long six angles will allow participants to have a better knowledge of the advantages Angers and themselves may get from their involvment in social, civic, artistic areas. Some of them organize international exchanges through sport or work camps in Vietnam or Rwanda but also are looking to sthrenghen the mobility inside the European Union. In another workshop, the young public will be invited to discover what commitment is, through experiences regarding, amongst other things, prevention of risky behaviours. In another place, the people will have an idea of the local young talents in graphic arts, theatre and music.

The Youth promotion day is only the most visible part of what the city does for its young population. The Youth Mission of Angers city is available to help those who have a (no professional) project in mind and want to achieve it. If Angevins were moving with their feet last weekend, on the next one they will move with their mind, and their heart.

09 June, 2014

Managers on board

Depuis quelques semaines, la Maine accueille un nouvel occupant. "Et plus que l'air marin", une péniche complètement restaurée grâce à un groupe d'entrepreneurs angevins, accueillera à son bord le public à compter des prochaines Journées du patrimoine avant de servir de cadre à des séminaires ou des expositions. La Maine redeviendra ainsi un peu plus un lieu d'activité et non un simple long vieux fleuve tranquille... 

The Maine river along the Carmes bank hosts a new barge. Dozens are already moored in the surroundings but that one symbolizes, with a few others, a new way of using the river. Not for leisures, not as a place to live (many barges are used as homes), but for business. A barge "Et plus que l'air marin", a reference to the famous (Angevin) poet Joachim du Bellay, is now parked in front of the current Favre d'Anne restaurant and is waiting, not passengers, but managers. Les Ducs d'Albe, a local company headed by Muriel Cheftel will be soon ready to hosts seminars, receptions or exhibitions near the bank or even on the river.

Credit Picture : Les Ducs d'Albe
By chance, the team of Angers managers who, more than a year ago, became the owners of that barge built in the 30's, discovered that it was equipped with a Beaudoin engine, still running even if the former occupier, a construction worker who lived there for years did't travelled with the boat. That one stayed one year at a few handreds meters upstream on Felix Faure bank, has been completely restored and found again the water a few weeks ago. A lot of work has to be done inside because the Ducs d'Albe partners, among them the Cesbron, McDonald and La Boucherie groups, or the Atmosphere communication agency and Mca Finances, have projects for the barge which formerly was designed for the transport of sand.

Next September, the Heritage Day goers will go onboard, because "Et plus que l'air marin" is indeed part of the Angers heritage. Litteraly.

07 June, 2014

Seventy years ago and today : "Angers under bombs"

Il y a soixante dix ans jour pour jour, le 8 juin 1944, Angers se trouvait au milieu d'une vague de bombardements aériens qui firent 360 morts et 7 000 sinistrés, sans compter le millier de maisons détruites ou devenues inhabitables. Une exposition, "Angers sous les bombes" commémore cet événement jusqu'au 22 août.  

Seventy years ago, June 8th 1944 was, for Angers, the middle of a series of four bombardments which started on May 28th and ended in July 17th. The June 8th bombardment was not the most deadly, "only" 28 victims were recorded while the previous killed 254 persons, ten times more, and the following 64. The city council dedicates an exhibition to that event which, under the title "Angers under bombs", reminds the bombardment of the Pentecôte Day. That operation was planned, as the next, for the destruction of the communications ways which could be used by the German army to counter attack the allied forces after the D Day.

Because Angers was a strategic point, 130 planes of the British Royal Air Force dropped for 40 minutes a deluge of bombs over the Saint-Laud district. The Avrillé airfield as well as the Maître-Ecole and Saint-Serge railway stations were taken for aims. The target was achieved : theSaint-Laud railway station was completely destroyed, as well as 800 houses, while 7,000 others were damaged. The June 8th and 17th bombings led the inhabitants to run away because it became more and more difficult for them to get food. But the disaster was not over.

Credit Pictures : Archives départementales de M&L
In August 10th, the third American army was compelled to bomb Angers. But that time, the strikes were much more precise. If the German army had cut the bridges over the Loire river, the little railway bridge of Pruniers was still intact. That way allowed the Americans to cross the river but they met a fierce resistance in Saint-Gemmes-sur-Loire. The Us army also move close to Angers through La Meignanne and Avrillé. So the Germans, caught by the North and the South, took refuge in the castle but the allied forces, under an aerial cover, crossed the Maine. At 5 pm on August 10th 1944, Angers was liberated.

05 June, 2014

The Ecole internationale bilingue d'Angers, English "main course"

Nathalie Paulin est la directrice de la nouvelle Ecole internationale bilingue d'Angers qui ouvrira ses portes Quai des Carmes le 2 septembre. Dans un petit bureau aménagé au sein de l'immeuble du restaurant Le Favre d'Anne où les étagères accueillant nappes et serviettes de table sont toujours en place, Mme Paulin dévoile le "menu" de son école qui vivra bientôt sa première rentrée des classes. 

Angers Daily News.- How the Ecole internationale bilingue was set up?
Nathalie Paulin.- My mother established the Ecole internationale bilingue 32 years ago in Nice. In her childhood, she had had to follow her family abroad. So, she was educated in Italy, then in Usa. Back to France, she became teacher but, after a while in French public schools, she realized that she was not pleased with the way chidren were taught. Then she decided to launch a new school based on individual teaching because children do not have the same expectations at the same time. She was convinced of the ability of young children (until seven year old) to learn a foreign language and of the usefulness of English as an asset for professional career.

Adn.- What are the specifics of the teaching methods of the Ecole internationale bilingue for the primary level?
NP.- First, we work in classes which do not exceed 12 to 15 pupils. This is why we are not part of the Education nationale because in that case we should have to constitute classes with 30 persons. We have to pay the teachers by ourselves but were are free from Education nationale regulations. Secondly, the teachers are native from French and English speaking countries. The French teachers are due to speak only in French and the English or American teachers are due to speak to pupils only in their mother tongue : English. And third, the timetable is equally shared between French, on the morning with math, French language, history and English with English language, sciences, geography, on the afternoon. 

Adn. And how does the lear-ning process start?
NP. - With the under-standing of English first. Our method is based upon the vision of objects and on games. The pupils have to take interest and even to have fun learning English. Then, in a second time, they start to speak. As we go along, the children have examinations with an assessment centre based in Cambridge. 

Adn. - Why did you choose Angers to open a bilingual primary school and what are the first results?
NP. - Because there is a real quality of life here. We could have choosen Nantes in pure economic standpoint but we were looking for a place propitious both for the school and for the pupils. Moreover, Angers is quite involved in the learning of foreign languages with the English Library in Angers and the Confucius Institute. We have been very well helped by town hall which has been pleased with our project. Because we opened our office only 10 days ago, we did very few promotion of the school. But the hearsay worked and we have already registered pupils. Some are French. Others have foreign nationalities.

Adn. - Why did you choose the Favre d'Anne location for your school?
NP.- For months, we were looking for a place as large as 400 m2, in down town and fitted with an open-air space... Fortuitously, I met Pascal Favre d'Anne, the owner of the restaurant, who had already said that he wanted to have a break for the discovery of Asian cuisine. So he offered me to consider the location and we concluded. We have works to do before the return from summer holidays (September 2nd) both for indoor and outdoor activities of the pupils. So we are here for good. 

03 June, 2014

From the map to the card

De la carte à la carte. - Tout ça pour ça? Promise à tous les redécoupages ou fusions, assurée de ne pas survivre à la réforme territoriale voulue par le gouvernement, les Pays de la Loire resteront tels quels! Pour autant, cela pourrait ne pas exclure quelques ajustements internes.

All that fuss for nothing! The Pays de la Loire region, of which Angers is part, were due first to be dismantled, with a part joining Brittany, another the Centre, another part the Poitou-Charents, then merged with Brittany, later merged with Poitou-Charentes, even to be included between Brittany and Poitou-Charentes will finally stay unchanged : no dismantlement and no merger. That is the final choice of the French republic president, François Hollande, made on June 2th.

All those hypothesis triggered critics from allies or adversaries of Mr. Hollande and of the territorial reform. "The rapprochement of our region with Poitou-Charentes results from a choice which, in no case, on a knowledge of territories and social, economic and politic realities", had pointed out the Angers mayor, Christophe Béchu, before he learnt the ultimate decision. But is that issue closed for good?

It is not sure. First because, in Brittany, and even in Loire-Atlantique (where the Pays-de-la-Loire capital is set) many people wanted to see that department be merged with Brittany. Secondly because Angers representatives, whatever be the political mood, have complained about the centralist reactions of Nantes, political but above all economic capital of the Pays de la Loire. In order to balance the power, ist would have been more appropriate to chose as capital of the region the town which is not already its economic centre like it is the case in the Us. And moreover Angers is the geographical centre of the region.

Angers as a giant playground on June 8th

Angers comme terrain de jeux géant le 8 juin . - Habitants et visiteurs d'Angers pourront le 8 juin prochain découvrir la ville sous un autre angle : celui d'un gigantesque terrain de sports et de jeux. "Tout Angers bouge" dont c'est la cinquième édition propose des circuits de 1 à 43 kms. La plupart avaient fait le plein de participants et de concurrents dès la mi-mars. 

To use Angers city as playground. That is what "Tout Angers bouge" offers to its inhabitants and visitors next Sunday, June 8th. If all year long, the town and its immediate surroundings are only considered, and displayed, as a place for work, travels or residence, the event organized by the city attempts to lead participants or public to look their environment as a giant stadium or a leisure park. "Tout Angers bouge" is first of all a series of races which will match all kind of competitors, even if the participants will not come for compete.

Except a super marathon (43 km) which already attracted about 340 runners, other races (8, 11 and 22 km) are more affordable for a larger public. The smallest (Discovery trail) will purely be urban and will take place along the Maine banks with two little incursions in the historical Doutre and Cité districts. Another one (Cité Trail) will go through a larger perimeter towards the Mall gardens and along the the tramway green ribbon along the Foch boulevard. The third (King René trail) will add the previous a passing through the Saint-Nicolas park. More the distance is longer, less the trails are urban. A little race (1.2 km) has also been planned for (600) families. The formula got the attention of Angevins and visitors : all those races were due to close the registrations by mid-march. 3,200 persons will take part! All the circuits will include supplies.

The "Dukes circuit", a little bit longer than the marathon, will go around the Maine lake and the previous Angers parks and districts. The departure will take place at 8.00 am in a no disclosed place where the runners will go by buses. The day will end with the Saint-Maurice ascent, a sprint on the 103 steps between the Maine river and the Angers cathedral. The event will also give to families opportunities to discover sports available in Angers thanks to more than 80 communities gathered in a village set up along the Maine river. According to the testimonies of previous participants, the new sights on the city were more memorable than the muscular aches!

02 June, 2014

Anjou Velo Vintage : en route to the good old days

La quatrième édition d'Anjou Vélo Vintage aura lieu les 28 et 29 juin dans le Saumurois. Cet événement est devenu en quelques années une référence internationalement établie pour les amoureux du vélo. Son dress-code et les cycles utilisables - deux conditions non négociables - donnent à cette manifestation les allures d'une balade dans le temps.

Credit pictures : Anjou Vélo vintage
Anjou Vélo Vintage is back on the track. Its fourth edition will take place on June 28 et 29 and, for the first time, a "Solex caravan joins the peloton of the retro bike ride". The routes of that tour, from Saumur, have been completely redesigned. The first, called "The discovery Solex" (30 km), goes through scenic roads and booming vineyards, charming villages with troglodytes as well as prestigious castles. One of them, the Brézé castle will host a unique lunch on the grass. Another route, "The stroll" (55 km) is designed for regular cyclists not frazzled after thirty kilometres and will lead these 25 meters underground in the basement of cellars and on the highs of Chenehutte where a single panorama, a Unesco World Heritage Site.

"The Hike" (90 km) matches cycling addicts and will make them discover the wooden lanscapes of the Anjou countryside and the Loire royal valley with a stop at the castle of Brissac, the Downton Abbeay of Anjou, also known as the Giant of the Loire Valley (seven floors and 204 rooms). Last but not least, the "Retro", a legendary race dedicated to road slaves (150 km) : "Beginner, to abstain from", the race "offers a large-scale version for the bitumen fanatics who will discover beautiful sceneries" but experiment muscular aches! Those who will reach the finish line will receive the honors of a final refreshment point in the cellars of the fine bubble winery Bouvet-Ladubay.

The fees for all the routes include food supplies, a bucolic lunch and a beggar's bag including a numbered plate and the wristband of the event. In four years, Anjou Velo Vintage has become the foremost French retro cycling event. The third edition registered 2,650 participants and 20,000 visitors from 71 French departments and 20 countries. A detailed dress-code gives to the event its vintage touch. That one, and the bicycle frame (pre-1987), are two non-negotiable requirements. The initiative has got an international news coverage with the Financial Times or the Eastern Daily Press which qualifies it as "ride into the past".