The Cycle Show 2006

8.10.06

The Bike Brothers were in need of a bit of relaxation so we decided to go to London to see the bike show that was being held at the Excel exhibition and conference centre. For this trip Andrew suggested that we stopped overnight in London rather than travelling up in the morning, I thought this was a great idea so Andrew sussed out a cheap hotel room and off we went. After travelling up the busy M4 motorway we finally arrived at our destination which turned out to be very near to Heathrow airport, one of the world’s busiest airports! We were amazed to see the planes constantly coming in to land at a few minutes interval and it was an unbelievable sight to see planes stacked up, one behind the other in rows of anything up to 5 at a time, where they all landed is anybody’s guess. After we checked into the hotel Andrew had a swift half in the hotel bar and then we took the car up to Hounslow where had a sit-down meal at a Chinese restaurant, the meal was delicious but unfortunately it was not enough for the Bike Brothers (there is nobody as hungry as a cyclist) so we went straight to the local KFC to top up.

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After a good nights sleep breakfast was taken at McDonalds, then we hopped on to the Tube to travel, like sardines in a tin, to the Excel centre, which has it’s own tube station nearby. There was a lengthy queue to get into the show but before long we were inside admiring the bikes which gleamed under the spotlights. It seemed that road bikes were now outnumbering mountain bikes, this suited us but it soon became apparent that most of the bike frames were made from carbon fibre and they all looked exactly the same! It was only the paintwork and decals that distinguished the different makes. De Rosa and possibly Colnago and Bianchi were the exceptions to this rule. There were, however, some nice steel frames on the Condor stand including the strangely shaped ‘Paris’ bike and a lovely orange bike with chromed lug-work. There were loads of accessory manufacturers there too numerous to mention. Once again this year we saw the dancers doing their ridiculous routine in cycling clothes; we watched them for one minute before moving on. The titanium framed ‘Enigma’ cycles caught our eye and we had a lengthy chat with Enigma cycles representative about all things titanium. The Bike Brothers were now getting hungry so we went outside to eat our sandwiches, we were starting to feel tired now and so it wasn't long before we succumbed to a snooze in the warm October sunshine. Suitably refreshed, we had another quick look around the hall and then decided to call it a day; we both agree that it was an enjoyable show but not one that warrants going to every year.


The Show

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The Hunt for 44/46 Kennington Road, SW1.

See also the old bike resource page here.

On the way back from the show I spotted that the train went through Waterloo tube station and I thought it would be a good idea to have a go at finding the original home of F.W. Evans Cycles - 44/46 Kennington Road. Evans moved to their new address at 'The Cut' in the late 70's. We didn't know where we were going so we headed off down Waterloo Rd, it wasn't long before we stumbled upon the 'The Cut' and the Evans shop there so we had a quick look around the showroom. There wasn't a lot to interest us here so we headed off in no particular direction still looking for Kennington Rd. We decided that London was a big city and that we had better ask for directions. We had plenty of advise as to where to go and after passing the Imperial War Museum and the house where Captain Bligh used to live we finally arrived at Kennington Rd, luckily we were at right end of the road and after a bit of detective work I was busy taking photographs of numbers 44/46 which are now a pharmacy.

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