London kann mit dem Ende des traditionellen Londoner Taxis aufatmen | End of London ‘Black Cab’ is a breath of fresh air for London

English: London black cab (Hackney carriage) C...

Link to original article:   Der Londoner Wendekreis

Link zum Orginal in der Sonntaz: Der Londoner Wendekreis

Als es bekannt wurde dass Manganese Bronze, der Hersteller des traditionellen Londoner‘black cabs’ bankrott sei, bedauerten es viele. Nur wer sich wirklich mit London auskannte, wusste, dass es ein gutes Omen war.  Die schwarzen Taxen sind bisher ein schwarzer Fleck für die Gesundheit der Londoner. Was nicht im Taztext steht:

  • Manganese Bronze und die London Taxi Internationals Firma wechselten mehrmals Besitzter und Teilhaber. Am Ende war die chinesische Firma Geely einer der Hauptteilhaber
  • Die Welt der Londoner pferdegezogenen Droschken kurz vor den motrorisierten Taxen kann man am besten (aus Pferdesicht) in Anna Sewells’ Roman ‘ Black Beauty’ nachlesen oder dessen Verfilmungen nachsehen.
  • Zu andere Maßnahmen des Bürgermeisters die Taxiluftverschmutzung zu reduzieren gehören (lautder  TfL “Strategie für saubere Luft in London”):  Bestimmte Reifen und Gangschaltungen, die sich weniger abnutzen, Ökologisches Fahrtraining aller neuen Fahrer (Option für bereits zugelassene), Anregung den Motor  im Stand auszuschalten.  Management der Warteschlangen an Bahnhöfen und Flughafen (insb. Heathrow) durch “taxi-marshals”
  • Schwerste Dieselmotoren: Die Taxen der TX Serie waren zuerst ein Nissan Motor. Später war es ein Ford Transit Motor, sowie ein Chrysler Diesel Motor wie in Jeeps (VM Motori R 425 DOHC Diesel , Chrysler 545RFE, und Eaton FSO 2405.Bereits 1989 gab es ein alternatives ‘moderneres’ Taxi, nämlich das Metrocab.  Die Firma wechselte zweimal die Besitzer und die Herstellung war unter anderem für 14 Monate unterbrochen.  2006 wurde die Herstellung entgültig eingestellt.
  • Es besteht die geringe Möglichkeit, dass verschiedene Firmen Manganese Bronze aufkaufen werden und beschließen die Herstellung wieder aufzunehmen.  Es ist allerdings fraglich, ob die Firma trotz des Ikonenstatus des Taxis, mit den für heutige Londoner Umweltverhältnisse untauglichen Motoren gegen die Taxen von Nissan und Mercedes ankommen könnten.  Allerdings werden bis 2027 für die bestehenden Taxen der TX  Ersatzteile gebraucht werden.
  • Ein von mir geschriebenes Profil zweier Taxifahrer erschien in der Taz im August:https://dzx2.net/2012/08/03/die-tageszeitung-taz-die-meisten-kunden-sind-exzentriker-most-customers-are-excentrics/
When Manganese Bronze, the company that manufactured the London black cab TX4, most newspaper articles, even those appearing in British papers, failed to question, whether beyond its iconic looks, the taxis the company produced were worth saving.   In an euphoria of sorrowful commentary it was in some of the readers comments that one could read about issues with fuel efficiency, exhaust emissions and the noise these vehicles created.  My article in the Sonntaz, the Sunday magazine supplement of the Taz newspaper discusses, if the demise of Manganese Bronze as producer of the London Black Cab was in deed ‘bad news’ for London.  The taxi’s iconic status acknowledged, the TX Series with its heavy Diesel engines (Ford Transit and Jeep based) actually means that these Taxis constitute 1/3 of the NOx London air pollution (even today).  I speak to one of the partners involved in the design of a new hybrid hydrogen / electric taxi for London, the general secretary of the largest organisation representing cab drivers, those who mange the transport infrastructure in London, London politicians and environmentalists.  The results indicate clearly, the TX cab although traditional in design and loved by many because of that, should since a long time have been radically modernised.  Those steps taken by the company alongside an alternative energy consortium proved too slow to save the taxi and the company.

  • Drivers View: Earlier in August 2012 I published in the Taz (Olympic supplement) a profile of two London black cab drivers,  known as London cabbies:  https://dzx2.net/2012/08/03/die-tageszeitung-taz-die-meisten-kunden-sind-exzentriker-most-customers-are-excentrics/
  • Not included in text: I also spoke with UNITE representing the workers of Manganese Bronze in Coventry and the London Cycling campaign.  Their responses are noted here:  UNITE: “The London taxi is iconic and the staff who build them are highly skilled. The black cab is part of Britain’s car manufacturing heritage and we expect the company and the administrators to do everything possible to secure the future of this Coventrybased company. Unite has met with the senior management today and the union has pledged to assist staff and the company to support a swift resolution to the current funding gap. Manganese Bronze is the last car manufacturer left in Coventry. If it becomes necessary the government should step in to support the company and protect the highly skilled workforce.”  London Cycling Campaign (Gerhard Weiss LCC): “Black cabs are very common in central London. Because they are allowed, like cyclists, to use bus lanes and need to stop frequently on the kerbside there is potential conflict with cyclists that’s a problem. Black cabs also contribute to air pollution which affects cyclists and pedestrians. However, I don’t think either of these issues is related to the cab manufacturer and both could be tackled with better regulation. Clearly zero emission vehicles would be ideal and should be feasible these days.”
  • An English translation can be ordered on request and for publication purposes only.

Meeting Her Majesty The Queen (aired 2000)

Queen Feature for Cool

Originally broadcasted in 2000 – full transcript follows – all rights reserved

Listen Here

INTRO:
Do you have a King or a Queen in your country? If you are listening from an English speaking country, chances are that the royal family of Great Britain was once the head of your country, or that the Queen still is your country’s head. Queen Elizabeth the Second is not only the representative head of various Commonwealth countries but also of is the head of the Church of England. All this makes her sound like a very powerful woman. Daniel Zylbersztajn went to investigate what young people in England had to say about her:

[anthem music only god safe the queen 20’’ ]

Vox Pops:

VP1 “She is gorgeous”
VP2: “ I think she makes a fairly good head of state!”
VP3: “She rules!”
VP4: “She should get a job and stop taking the tax payers money!”
VP5: “Well she is not as beautiful as our president!”
VP6: Maybe she is old, but she is cool!

[Daniel] Many ways to describe this one person her majesty the Queen Elizabeth the second, who has been Queen now for almost fifty years assuming official duties when she was only 16 years old. The Queen doesn’t only own expensive crowns kept for her in the Tower of London, she may be the richest woman in the world, owning over five billion pounds sterling. She can summon and dissolve the British parliament and is also the supreme legal power in the country. Post-boxes and coins in Britain bear her emblem or picture. But not everyone gets the honour to meet her. It are mostly distinguished and honourable persons that get to meet her. Cynthia and Mathew from Cornwall in England are two persons who met her recently. Both of them study for their A-Levels at the moment. Both of them were winners of an essay competition on the Second World War, and their first price was to meet the Queen. What better people than them, to give you a first impression of what the Queen is like.

[Cynthia] “Good Afternoon your majesty! I had to courtesy when I met her, and refer to her as your majesty!
[Matthew] You have to shake hands and say Good Afternoon Ma.
[Cynthia] When we met her she wasn’t as scary really as we thought, I don’t think!
[Matthew]She is really nice and not what you’d expect. She was really normal. She is only small as well, she is only about five-foot tall.

[Daniel] Only five foot? I always though she must be of gigantic measures, judging her powers. I asked Cynthia and Mathew what they felt the Queen was all about:

[Cynthia] The royal family serve a big purpose. They stand for Britain, without standing for politics. And they, you know, even though , the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are really quite old now, they continue to work all the time, representing the country at some many things.
[Matthew] They are definitely a role model for everyone in England and the world really! Because everyone should aim to be like them!
[Cynthia] I don’t think that the royal family are role models for the rest of us. I think it is too much of a burden to be place on one family! But the mannerism and the behaviour of the Queen and of the Duke of Edinburgh, of the royal family, are different to em, for example leading politicians in the country.

So there you are. Well most politicians do not rule for 50 years, so of course the Queen would have a very distinguished and settled routine. For most people the Queen is still only something they see on their TV, or maybe on a post-card. Opposite Buckingham Palace, the large London residence of the Queen, there are many shops where you can buy items that de-picture the Queen Mr. Barzu is the store-owner of one these shops:

[Mr. Barzu]:
The most popular items that we sell, related to her majesty the Queen are:
Postcards, trays and mugs celebrating the golden wedding anniversary, also coronation, these items are very popular with people from abroad, especially the Germans, Australians and the Americans and the students from schools. We often see her majesty the queen driving past. Once I waved and I was greeted with a smile and I thought it was very encouraging!

Mr Barzu must have been on cloud nine for an entire week. I think he should always wear a sticker or T-shirt saying: I was smiled to by the Queen!

The Queen in Britain is still as popular as ever. In fact she has recently revamped her image and skills and even tried to understand how computers work, which is more than for many people over the age of seventy, although she is apparently not on e-mail as yet.

For Cool I am Daniel Zylbersztajn from London, leaving you with some more impressions of people on the streets of London when I asked them about the Queen:

[anthem music only god safe the queen 5’’ ]

accompanied by
Voice 1, male: God save our gracious Queen!
Voice 2, male, long live our noble Queen!
Voice 3, female: God Save the Queen

At 17” anthem Vox pops set in

VP1: She is a drag queen!
VP2: She is not the real Queen. They’re fake, they’re not the real kings and queens on this planet, she is just sitting on fortunes that are not hers
VP3: Ah, she is all right! Wears awful cloths though. She needs to get back to the sixties, when she used to wear shorter skirts, I think!

[Anthem finishes] male voice: God Save the Queen!