Locks of love tinkling in Cologne
Have you heard about "love locks"? Take a walk along the Hohenzollernbrücke and when a train rumbles past you'll hear the tinkling of hundreds of padlocks against the metal railings. These are "love locks" put up by people to show their love for someone, or as a mark of friendship. The practice seems to have started at the beginning of the Eighties in the Hungarian city of Pécs, where lovers began to clamp padlocks to a wrought-iron fence near the medieval cathedral. Love locks have also appeared in Florence, Rome, Guam, Montevideo, Seoul, Tokyo, Kiev, Seville and other major cities. In Rome the practise was given a huge boost in 2006 by a romantic movie called "Ho Voglia di Te" where a teenage couple are seen writing their names on a padlock and locking it with a chain around a lamppost. Italian teenagers began to imitate the practice on the Ponte Milvio in Rome, throwing the keys into the Tiber in a gesture of undying love. We have two "love lock" spots in Cologne, one on the Hohenzollernbrucke and the other on the Südbrucke. So if you feel the need to add your own, write your name on a padlock, attach it to the railing and then cast your key into the river - and your love is secured forever. You can also check out the website by the Cologne band "Höhner" whose new single "Schenk mir dein Herz" plays on the "love lock" craze, you can win a Höhner branded heart shaped padlock, or send an email "love lock" to your loved one: www.schenk-mir-dein-herz.de (shame about the music...).
Find out more at Wikipedia