Frank Zimmer

Trouble in Paradise

Behind Haus Sickingen and its neighbourhood in Bacharach Oberstraße, an unknown world opens up. Around 2 hectares of hillside with lots of greenery, few access points and the best views. People are rarely to be found in this idyll, and when they are, they often cause trouble. The town is currently discussing an article in the „Rhein-Zeitung“. The owner of Haus Sickinger, Jean-Marc Petit, is making serious accusations against the long-established Verschönerungsverein (VV). He says that he owns most of the land, does not care about it and lets it become overgrown with bushes. According to Petit, there are dangers for the whole town: in times of drought, a forest fire with unforeseeable consequences for the historic centre, and in times of heavy rain, landslides and mudslides. The supervisory authority ADD is also alarmed, the article continues. For a long time, they had promoted goat keeping on the site in order to keep the vegetation low. Now they are demanding money back because the animals could not graze long enough. The Verschönerungsverein does not get a word in edgewise and is surprised.

Unknown Bacharach: The Schlossberg behind Haus Sickingen.

„I am not aware of any reclaiming by the ADD,“ says Fritz Stüber, head of the association, when asked by Mittelrheingold. The goat grazing had been „terminated in accordance with the contract“. Contrary to what is stated in the „RZ“, the association does not own the „majority“ of the area, but less than a quarter. As a part-time vintner, Stüber has been involved in the care and management of steep slopes for many years, and through the association he is also in contact with experts in climate adaptation. „Cutting down the existing trees is not a solution,“ Stüber believes. The roots protect against soil erosion and in the coming hot years the city centre needs more greenery, not less. However, the Bacharach trees should not grow to the sky either: according to Stüber, the beautification association had parts of the growth trimmed in 2020.  Rhein-Zeitung (€), communication from Fritz Stüber

Boppard buys a Hotel

In its search for accommodation for Ukrainian refugees, the city of Boppard is putting its money where its mouth is. It has bought the vacant hotel „Zur alten Post“ in the Bad Salzig district. The building has about 20 rooms with showers and toilets. The kitchen is still intact and usable, according to the „RZ“. Mayor Jörg Haseneier expects „the first Ukrainian refugees to move in in June or earlier.“ Currently, about 100 war victims are being cared for in the city. Most of the beds are offered by the Jakobsberg monastery estate, which is currently closed for renovation work. Rhein-Zeitung (€)

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