In a rare move, the wet conditions in Cofton Park have forced organisers to make changes to this year’s Pride of Longbridge event.
This Saturday’s (14th April) event will go ahead but on a smaller scale, with the focus being around the factory gates and Lowhill Lane.
Pride of Longbridge is an annual gathering of Longbridge built car enthusiasts, ex-workers and the local community.
Being very reliant on weather conditions and conditions in the park, enthusiasts and their vehicles – some travelling from Europe and beyond – and the local community have turned out every April since the closure of MG Rover in 2005.
In 2016, Pride of Longbridge had to be cancelled as sleet and snow hammered the park on the morning of the event.
However, hundreds of cars and their owners still made the pilgrimage home to gather around the factory gates in Lowhill Lane, providing a spectacular display celebrating the heritage of the site.
This set a precedent and this year, with park conditions too wet to drive on, organisers have not cancelled the event, opting instead to work with attending car clubs to oversee a reduced event focused in the area around Cofton Park and the MG site.
This year’s event amended
Pride of Longbridge’s Gemma Cartwright said: “Due to Cofton Park being unusable, sadly we have had to amend Pride of Longbridge.
“Local clubs will be attending with a few cars and we have an area still for the ex workforce to meet up. We have a gent who will be sharing his wonderful memorabilia.”
She requested that those attending in cars gather around the Lowhill Lane area and ex-workers meet up at ‘Q-Gate’ in Lowhill Lane and asked residents to be aware that the roads around the park will be very busy.
Gemma said that although the event would be much reduced, a Pride of Longbridge would still be celebrated.
She said: “When the cars come over the hill and start to arrive, it’s one of the best visions to see – in fact many stand in silence to enjoy the moment. This year will be a low key event supporting the reason why it happens – to celebrate the heritage, the workers and the local community of Longbridge”.
When: 10am – 2pm Saturday 14th April
Where: Those bringing vehicles are asked to head towards Lowhill Lane, Longbridge B31 2BQ where Pride of Longbridge marshalls will be available. Please be patient! :)
Ex-workers gather at Q-Gate as a meeting point.
Groups are requested not to gather in Longbridge town centre due to an existing event there.
Who: All welcome to come down to gather and view the cars. Please bear in mind that roads around Cofton Park / MG will be very busy!
• No cars will be allowed on Cofton Park due to extremely wet conditions.
• Cars can stop and drive by on Lowhill Lane – some local enthusiasts groups will be present
• Marshalls will be available to try and help people stop / drive through
• Ex-workers can meet up at Q-Gate – memorabilia will be available to view
• Food & refreshments will be available on the street.
• All are asked to be patient as the roads will be very busy
• This is a volunteer run event and they will all be trying to make this a memorable event in difficult circumstances – WELL DONE TO ALL!
Pride of Longbridge 2016…