Here goes.... an attempt at a ride report....
Choosing the dates of the MiniTour® for July 1st was a slight miscalculation, or a lack of forethought – 90th Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme? But, in the end the ladies of the party didn’t want to do any “war” things on this trip and so we avoided the wars of the 20th Century. Instead of 20th century wars we opted for the earlier conflicts in the 14th and 15th centuries, namely Crécy and Agincourt.
Crécy was our Saturday stop en route for the hotel in Abbeville. The group consisted of 8 people on 4 bikes. Two of the riders had never ridden abroad despite years of riding experience and came equipped with a Pan European (Ian & Amanda) and a Blackbird (Simon & Debbie), with Claire and me on the GS. The fourth was Nigel with wife Jane on a Suzuki GSX600.
Doris (my Quest) ably navigating us across the forest at Crécy to the badly signposted battlefield. Talk of underwhelming. Okay, so the French lost but this is quite appalling. There’s a gravely car-park, some badly maintained toilets and a heavily graffiti encrusted tower to mark the spot where Edward III of England is supposed to have stood to conduct the English troops against the French cavalry.
In the “Moulin” the panoramas showing where the armies were deployed has been the victim of one too many cigarette burns. Pathetic.
On the Sunday and after lunch and then an hour or so exploring the underground cité of Naours it was back on the bikes on the last leg of the journey to Azincourt.
Doris faultlessly led us there and right to the visitor centre.
Azincourt Visitor Centre
Nothing could be in more contrast to Crécy. The roads are lined with cut-outs of knights and archers. A decent car park and an audiovisual display using TV-heads on models dressed a characters form the era. The hands on section in the mezzanine gives you the chance to see how hard it was to pull the string back on the bow and launch an arrow but 10 a minute must have needed super strength. “Well worth a visit” and only €6.50 to get in.
In the end a nice weekend with good company.
Competition time: No prizes on offer but can you guess what Nigel ordered for his lunch? Yep that's it, with a piece of lettuce known in the catering industry as "garnish". There were chips/fries/frites as well.....