October 1st, 2016

Pride of Longbridge Rally was the biggest one yet

Updated: 10:46 am, May 07, 2015

MORE THAN 4,000 vehicles all built at Longbridge descended on Cofton Park on Saturday (April 18) to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the collapse of MG Rover.

This year’s Pride of Longbridge Rally was the biggest yet and saw Austin 7s, classic Minis, Rovers, MGs, Maestros, Metros, Allegros and more go on show.

More than 10,000 people went along to the event where there was also a host of other attractions, including hot and cold food, children’s activities with Northfield Arts Forum, fairground rides and a bouncy castle.

The rally was launched in 2006 to bring together the community, enthusiasts and former and present workers of the site.

There was also a classic Austin BT Maestro van raffled off to raise funds for the rally and the Midlands Air Ambulance.

It was donated by Anthony Ellis.

Rally organiser Gemma Cartwright MBE said: “This year’s POL was the biggest yet – local people and many from further afield, from Denmark to Australia, travelled to attend and show united strength to Pride of Longbridge.

“So many workers turned up and shared their memories with the enthusiasts.

“It was a very rustic event but deep in the heart of many and we were overwhelmed with the way the day went – even the weather was great as well.”

She added Bromsgrove and Longbridge businesses had said they had seen an increase in footfall over the weekend.

And she said she would also like to thank Rover Enthusiasts West Midlands, the Crowley Convoy, Peter Best Insurance, those who had volunteered their time and everyone else who had helped make the event such a success.

Former MG Rover employee Andy Cartwright said it was great to see so many ex-employees.

“There were some people there I had not seen since it collapsed.” he added.

He thanked Peter McDonald and his team in Bromsgrove for spreading the word about the rally.

A POL book which is being compiled about former employees was also launched at the event.

Gemma said wanted people to remind people to submit their memories of the plant.

Anyone who worked at Longbridge or who had family working there is welcome to be included.

E-mail prideoflongnridge2006@gmail.com for more information or to submit memories and photographs.

For more on the rally, visit the Facebook page by searching for ‘Pride of Longbridge’.

Engine-nuity – Another classic car being displayed in all its glory.

An arresting sight – A Rover police car from days gone by. s

Magnificent Minis – Jay Garbett and Luke Heaver from the Robin Hood Mini Club. 1715010B

Katie and Sophie Harper with a 1953 MG TF. 1715010B

Ready teddy go! – This MG bear was part of one of the displays. 1715010B

Tuning up ready 0 John Dunn and his MG ZR 2005 Mk 2. 1715010B3

A rallying call – Thousands of cars made their way to Cofton Park. 1715010B

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