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Frome to host Vélo Jam next Wednesday

Event offers something for everyone from Absolute Beginners to climbers wanting to go through Private Hell

Vélo Jam sounds like it should be a clothing label resulting from a collaboration between cycling’s leading Mod, Bradley Wiggins, and his musical idol, Paul Weller. But it’s actually the name of a cycling festival being held next Wednesday in Frome, the evening before Stage 6 of the Tour of Britain departs from the Somerset town on its way to Bideford.

The event may be crammed into three hours from 6pm to 9pm, but it promises a host of activities for keen cyclists and curious locals alike, including a talk by Dr Alex Moulton, inventor almost 50 years ago of the small-wheeled bicycle that bears his name, now made in nearby Bradford-on-Avon.

Meanwhile, the Westway Centre hosts charity stalls, including a display of military vehicles by Help for Heroes, and the Market Yard car park features a display by the Animal Mountain Bank Stunt Team and Professor Crump’s Crazy Bike Circus Show.

It also plays host to – one for the fixie fans here – a chance to win a Charge bike in a longest trackstand competition.

But the fun and prizes don’t stop there. The Cheese and Grain concert venue has a static spinning time trial contest, plus a chance to meet Dennis Talbot, ex-pro rider and European Madison champion in 1952.

The highlight promises to be the inaugural Catherine Hill Cobble Wobble ride, organised by the Black Canon Mountain Bike Club, an uphill time trial over 6,000 cobbles with riders setting off at two-minute intervals from 6.30pm. Let’s hope it doesn’t rain.

Maybe if Wiggo can persuade the Garmin-Slipstream driver to step on the gas on the way down from the Stage 5 finish in Stoke-on-Trent, he could have a bash at it, too?

And for those who want to get jelly legs without the exertion of cycling uphill, Milk Street Brewery has come up with a new ‘Cobble Wobble’ ale, which will be sold in The Griffin in Milk Street and the Cheese and Grain Bar.

From September 1 to 15, there is also a treasure hunt featuring bike parts hidden in shop windows around town, with a £600 bike as the prize.

Full details are available from Frome Town Council's website. Entrants to the Catherine Hill Cobble Wobble need to pre-register, with entries available from the Live2Ride bike shop in Frome or by calling 01373 469590.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Morgan | 14 years ago

Why do these things always happen when we're broke? Let's hope there's another one next year - sounds aces!

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