Category Archives: Sports and Leisure Activities

Pas De Calais Tourism – New Events

The Pas de Calais region of France is determined not to be put in the shade by the forthcoming Olympic Games just across the Channel in London, and has come up with a new Non-Olympic Games event of its own.

By the look of it the Pas De Calais event will be far more spectacular and entertaining than the London one which mostly involves running round in circles.

Here is a team training for the Anti-Gravity Marathon.  (photo: Pas De Calais Tourisme)

Olympic Anti-Gravity marathon training

And some competitors training for the difficult Extreme Skydiving (Freestyle) which is like Skydiving but without parachutes.

Olympic Extreme Skydiving practice

7VSG – lots of events planned

We’ve just received details of the full programme of events that is planned by the 7 Valleys Social Group. In case you’re not on their mailing list, we’re reproducing their newsletter here:

Line Dancing.
We are pleased to announce the start of our regular Line Dance evenings – the first being on Wednesday 25th April. Our Line Dance teacher Suzi will be in attendance to show you the steps and organise the dances. The cost of participation is 4€ pp to be paid on each night. The evenings will comprise two one hour sessions starting at 7.30pm with a break at 8.30pm. Doors open 7pm. Why not make a night of it and bring your friends too!
All our Line Dance dates until the summer holiday break are:
Wednesday April 25th
Wednesday May 9th
Wednesday May 23rd
Wednesday June 13th
Wednesday June 27th
Did you know? … Line dancing is not only a huge amount of fun, but very good exercise too!

Club summer opening arrangements – Every Wednesday evening through July & August.
For the convenience and enjoyment of our members and their family/guests the club will be open every Wednesday evening during July and August. All the club facilities will be available including games, pool table and bar.
(Special dates within this period are: July 11th BBQ and August 27th BBQ.)

Murder Mystery Night at the 7VSG Club Room — Saturday May 5th (hurry – only a few places left)
A chance for you to figure out ‘who dunnit’ and enjoy a fun filled evening into the bargain. At various times throughout the evening our drama group will be unfolding a Murder Mystery. Someone in the room is the murderer, but who? Only the ‘murderer’ him/herself will know. This event will be strictly limited to 30 places, so do please book and pay for your places early. The meal will be a cold carvery including wine, starter, main course, dessert and coffee. Vegetarian available by prior arrangement. 10€ pp inclusive … Contact Sandra on

Drama Group.
It’s all systems go for our drama group who are at present rehearsing for an Old Time Music Hall which will be performed in the summer. They are also engaged in preparations for our next Panto which already looks like it will be a lot of fun. It’s not too late for you to join our drama group. People are always needed for on stage, back stage and techies. No previous experience needed.

Local Brocantes.
Thanks to Sandra our website ‘local brocantes’ page is now updated for 2012:

Club information and 7VSG programme for 2012 (plus events and special summer holiday opening times)

Berck Kite Festival 2012 ~ World Championships

This year’s spectacular week of kite flying. Demonstrations, Competitions, Exhibition stands and lots of other attractions –  AND the World Sport Kite Championships. This show is worth a visit!  Just head for the beach!

Here’s a video of the kind of precision flying you’ll see.

French science beats British foxhunting ban. Frogsiders Exclusive!

Scenes like this could soon become legal again in Britain

Traditional foxhunting may soon be able to take place legally once again in Britain, thanks to the controversial development work of a maverick French geneticist and his team of bio-engineers at a university in the Périgord region of France.

Professor Jean-Claude Morue and his team at the University of Rosser-Le-Cabillaud in south-western France, have recently completed work on a project originally funded by the European Union to aid the truffle hunters of the Périgord. Aiming to breed a pig with certain “doggy” characterisitics as a perfect partner for the region’s truffle hunters, the professor claims to have “accidentally” bred an aggressive hunting pig with all the pack instincts, obedience, speed and stamina of a foxhound. Continue reading “French science beats British foxhunting ban. Frogsiders Exclusive!” »

Graham’s quiz – it’s impossible!

Frogsiders has pleasure in announcing news of a challenging quiz which will suit only the most addicted puzzle solvers.  Be warned, however, even the most hardened of cryptic crossword solvers could suffer permanent severe brain torsion caused by the sudden mental twists and violent intellect warps this quiz might induce.

The puzzle-setter, Merlimont-resident Graham Hughes writes, “Since 1904 King William’s College on the Isle of Man has set a quiz for its pupils to occupy the little darlings over Christmas.  The Guardian has published this since 1951.  Judging by the television popularity of Mastermind, University Challenge etc quizzes are an increasingly  popular diversion even in these times of Wiis and PlayStations.

As some of you know I enjoy devising my own quizzes – indeed I have inflicted these on you from time to time.  This is another time!  I am sure you would like a challenging diversion over Christmas so I have devised a quiz which I reckon is well nigh impossible. The objective is to raise money for our poor little parish in France – Eglise Anglicane du Pas de Calais”.

Click here to download the quiz in .pdf format.

“Please have a go – send it to your friends and get them to send it to their friends.

As I say in the instructions, I don’t expect an all correct answer so the best attempts will win the prizes.  Oh by the way,  I forgot to mention that it will cost you £5 or €5 to enter.  But if you simply get some enjoyment and don’t feel you have done well enough, please support the cause by sending me a small donation anyway.

I understand that when a church in Stevenage did the same sort of thing they raised several hundred pounds so the prizes will be worthwhile!
Your answers may be sent to the special competition email address, , or by post, together with your church fund contribution,  to:
Graham Hughes
130 Impasse du Moulin
62155 France
If you send a cheque in pounds please make it payable to “Diocese in Europe”, in Euros to “ Association Cultuelle de L’Église Anglicane du Pas de Calais”
As usual the question-setter’s decision will be final but if you have comments or questions please let me know.”

Frogsiders view:  For good medical reasons we suggest only healthy, fit and mentally stable people try this quiz.  We don’t think any normal human could come up with all the correct answers, and therefore suggest you only attempt it if you currently have plenty of hair left on your head to pull out.  Frogsiders will not be responsible for any damage to persons or property, howsoever caused.

December Events – Frogsiders recommends…

December is so often taken up with sending cards, gift shopping, hanging decorations and preparing for family feasts, that it’s often difficult to get out and do anything more entertaining. Frogsiders comes to the rescue with a few really interesting ideas for December outings.

The Franco-British Christmas Craft Market at Montreuil (already featured in an earlier post, but worth a reminder now. This weekend Sturday and Sunday 4/5 December (afternoons only)

Open Studio at the workshop of Scottish artists Alice Johnston and James Buchanan Johnston. Also already featured here, also in Montreuil this weekend Sunday 5 December 15h00 to 19h00

For tennis fans and all sports lovers, the 17th Le Touquet International Women’s Open Tennis Tournament takes place all next week Monday 6 December to Sunday 11 December at the Le Touquet Tennis Club. See the stars of the future (Amelie Mauresmo and Justine Henin were successful here on their way to stardom) including two contestants who are already ranked in the world’s top 50. Tickets from only 3€. Telephone 03 21 05 02 97

Ice Sculpture Demonstration at St Pol sur Ternoise.  Free!

A free demonstration by Philippe Gondrand, the champion ice-sculptor of France, at St Pol sur Ternoise, Square Warstein, December 11 at 14h00

Fancy something a bit more tropical?  Latin Singer, Dany Brillant stops off for one night, Saturday 18 December, on his “Salsa Tour” to give a concert at the Palais de Congres, Place de l’Hermitage, Le Touquet. Tickets from 36€ Telephone 03 21 06 72 00.

Traditional Winter Fair at Hesdin December 4 to December 12. A traditional event in the town dating back to the 17th Century. The programme includes a winter market on Saturday December 4, and an indoor Christmas Market in the Salle De Manege on the 11 and 12 December from 10h00 to 19h00. Enjoy also, all week, the traditional pork offal and “tripes” dishes which most of the restaurants in the town will be serving as part of the festival.

During December the villages and towns of the Seven Valleys region hold many events – too many to list here, but you can get the full programme by clicking here

How tough is the Tour De France? – not as tough as in 1910!

Today is the day for Andy Schlek, the Luxembourgeois rider challenging for the lead and eventual victory in the Tour De France. But how tough is the mountain section the riders face today? Not as tough as it was 100 years ago, apparently, as you can read in this article by Richard Williams in the Guardian.

Fancy a bike ride?

  • Et alors! How French cricketers aim to beat us at our own game

    This article, by Adam Sage, is reprinted from The Times, June 5, 2010

    For centuries it was dismissed by the French as an incomprehensible activity practised by British eccentrics and the inhabitants of other nations that had had the misfortune — or the poor judgment — to fall under British influence.

    Now France has decided to take us on at our own game, aiming for nothing less than humiliation for les Anglais at Lord’s — albeit within a few decades.

    The rise of cricket has been marked by its introduction to primary schools where pupils are getting to grips with le coup d’équerre (the square cut), la balle courbée vers l’extérieur (the outswinger) and a triumphant cry of et alors (howzat).

    A state cricket diploma is expected to receive official approval this year in a step towards France’s first professional cricket coaches. “We have several buds which we are nurturing,” Tony Banton, the chairman of France Cricket, the national cricket association, said.

    The rise of the sport in France comes 70 years after it was banned as alien by the Vichy regime, which collaborated with the Nazi occupation. It follows an influx of Britons and of Pakistanis, Indians, West Indians, Bangladeshis and Sri Lankans, who probably form France’s biggest cricket-loving community.

    The newcomers are responsible for forming 42 clubs but the sport is also attracting Gallic interest for almost the first time since 1900, when a French side was beaten by England in the Paris Olympic Games final.

    France has a national side, which plays in the European second division, and 1,200 registered players — a number that is rising by about 10 per cent a year, according to Adrien Geille, the general manager of France Cricket. About 40 per cent of the players are French. “Our goal is to have a semi- professional tournament by 2015,” Mr Geille told The Times.

    The ambition has been strengthened by the arrival of cricket in primary schools. To date, four schools in central France have agreed to put le cricket — or rather, le kwik cricket, a version played with plastic bats and balls — on to their weekly sporting curriculum this year.

    Teachers elsewhere, notably in northern France, are expected to follow in their footsteps from September this year, after France Cricket taught them the basic rules and techniques.

    David Bordes, the national technical director of France Cricket, said that coaches had gone to primary schools about once a week to introduce pupils to the sport. “We get more requests than we can meet,” he said. “We try to pick those where the intervention is likely to be followed up afterwards.” About 40 enthusiasts have obtained a certificate to coach cricket on a voluntary basis.

    Mr Bordes wants to go a step further by persuading the authorities to create a cricket coaching diploma, which would enable holders to demand remuneration. He said that after a six-year struggle the Ministry of Health and Sport was poised to accept the move.

    Just in case France’s new coaches struggle to understand the 42 laws and five appendices published by the MCC, France Cricket has translated them and published them on its website for the first time.

    Thus it is that the wicket-keeper is now officially known as le guardien de guichet and lbw as jdg (jambe devant guichet).

    There was much head-scratching over the best way to translate “not out”. After what one insider described as a lively debate, a consensus emerged in favour of “rien”, which literally means nothing and which will no doubt be accompanied in practice by a classic Gallic shrug.

    Terms of engagement

    Fielder chasseur (literally, hunter)

    Batsman batteur (drummer)

    Bowler lanceur (thrower)

    Bouncer rase-tête (head shaver)

    Donkey drop balle en cloche (bell-shaped ball)

    Duck zéro pointé (zero points)

    Four touche indirecte (indirect touch)

    Six touche directe (direct touch)

    Googly bosanquet (after Bernard Bosanquet, the inventor of the googly)

    Stump piquet (post)

    Wicket maiden vierge couronnée (crowned virgin)

    Corridor of uncertainty le couloir du doute (corridor of doubt)

    How the English game of French cricket is played

    The aim of this traditional game is for the bowler to hit the legs of the batsman with an underarm delivery. There is only one batsman, whose sole aim is to stay “in” for as long as possible by shielding his or her legs with the bat.

    In some versions of the game, runs can be scored by passing the bat completely around the body until the ball has been fielded.

    Batsmen (or women, for that matter) can move their feet only after they have hit the ball — if they miss, they must stay rooted to the spot and defend their legs as best they can.

    As far as The Times is aware, French people do not play French cricket.

    Frogsiders Footnote:  Could this mean there’ll be jobs available in Northern French schools for English cricket coaches?

  • Royal British Legion Garden Party

    Frogsiders readers are cordially invited to the Royal British Legion,  Boulogne and Pas de Calais Branch, Garden Party. which will take place at:

    10 Chemin de la Foret, 62270 Boubers sur Canche on Saturday, June 26, 14h00 to 17h00.

    The Royal British Legion is a non-political,  inter denominational and multi racial association with two aims that of honouring the memory of those who died in the many conflicts through out the world , assisting the families of those died and aiding those  injured.

    Please help us help them

    Anne and Jeremy Towler.

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