Cars are Expensive

So the leaves are turning and the Howies Autumn catalogue has arrived. I guess summer is finally over. Howies have to be my favourite clothing company, but I’m not sure I know where they’re going. It used to pretty clear in the past, lots of nice stuff made out of environmentally sustainable materials like organic cotton and merino wool with natural dyes and socially responsible manufacturing. It’s not the cheapest, but it lasts well, it’s made well and you can have a reasonably clear conscience about buying Howies stuff.

The problem is they’re now doing lots of stuff made out of polyesters and other synthetic materials. Now while many of these are potentially sourced from recycled plastics, at the end of the day you can’t help thinking that you’d be better off with a nice bit of wool or cotton. How about silk? Any ways what it’s made out of is less of an issue than the fact they keep harping on about consumer debt and then sending out catalogues to people tempting them to buy the latest lovely things and add to the £1 million of additional consumer debt that Brits run up every four minutes. It’s a tricky one. Live, buy, consume, die?

Talking of such catch phrases the Designers Republic team have been busy. There’s a great new video they’ve produced for Citizen Bird. Check it out here – it’s part of a Coca Cola sponsored initiative.

So I’m feeling quite lucky to be alive after this little incident. Slow depressurization and then catastrophic failure at 80mph. Tasty. The advantage of low pro tyres is that you don’t loose too much control. So that’s another pair of Eagle F1’s then…

Going down

IMBA UK have redeveloped their site. I have to say I thought it was better before, but hey who am I to mention such things. I didn’t step up to get involved and the new site will feature: A revised “Routes” section, including a new Challenge Trails section with an interactive map giving links to appropriate websites and soon there will be a Paypal facility for merchandise and subscriptions.

Here’s an important notice that all riders need to get involved with and behind to support:

Subject: MTB Byway campaign

MPs will be voting on the Natural England & Rural Communities Bill (NERC) on 11th October.

We can help influence MP’s to amend the Bill to allow mountainbikers to claim Restricted Byways (used to be RUPPs). The Rosedale case, and two recent Public Enquiry rulings have shown that the law discriminates against cyclists wishing to claim new routes after 20 years of uncontested use. IMBA is working with CTC to persuade Ministers to modify a clause in section 6 of the Bill to confirm that cyclists can claim Restricted Byways.

As time is short, the easiest option is to go here and “Open Up New Rights of Way for Off-Road Cycling” and click on “Join Campaign” and then “Lobby your MP”. Then just type in your postcode into the box under “Recognise My Right of Way” and the job is done. Alternatively, a more personal method is to send your own e mail to your MP. Go to this site and type your postcode into the “Postcode Search” box and then click on the subsequent e mail link. A sample letter can be found at the end of this mailing. Let us know of any responses.

And finally get behind the IMBA International Report Card. Yes it’s that time of year again. Last year, voters from the UK gave the Forestry Commission in Scotland a great confidence boost by voting Scotland the best international destination – so your vote does count! If you wish to record your vote for England, Scotland and Wales then you will have to do this on different days – only one vote per day.

Author: Cris Bloomfield

Usually mountain biking in the North.

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