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Blakes Coaches of East Anstey, near Tiverton has taken part in the UK Coach Rally for a number of years. The Irizar-bodied Scania is seen at Alton Towers, where the 2015 event was held. GARETH EVANS
Blakes Coaches of East Anstey, near Tiverton has taken part in the UK Coach Rally for a number of years. The Irizar-bodied Scania is seen at Alton Towers, where the 2015 event was held. GARETH EVANS

With only 11 spaces left, would-be competitors are urged by organisers to book, as support for key event blossoms

Space for competitors at this year’s UK Coach Rally is now at a premium – with anyone considering doing so advised to book promptly to ensure their place, organisers have told CBW.

As previously reported, the event is returning to its roots at a seaside location after several years inland – at Peterborough and latterly Alton Towers. This year’s event will take place in Blackpool over the weekend of April 23 – 24.

Entries for this year’s rally are ahead for the same time in 2015, with many new coach companies entered. As this issue went to press on Monday, there were 39 confirmed entries, with only 11 spaces available.

One of the organisers, Ann Cousins told CBW: “It’s buzzing. We’ve had operators booking who have returned to the rally after an absence of some years. It will be great to see familiar faces, as well as new ones. People are also booking dinner and dance tickets by the table rather than in ones and twos, as has been the case in more recent years. It’s such a lovely venue. I think it’s the attraction of the seaside. Merlin has gone of its way to help us. We are so grateful to the team there.”

Well-known traders have also thrown their weight behind the event, Ann said: “We are delighted with the response from the industry. The trade display area will be hosting new vehicles from Irizar UK, MAN Truck & Bus UK, Plaxton Coach Sales, Moseley in the South, Scania GB, BASE and Pelican Bus & Coach – all the top names – with others yet to confirm.”

Ann continued: “The UK Coach Rally welcomes all visitors – admission is free. Come and watch the competitors’ driving skills and see the examples of the very best vehicles the coach industry has to offer. Discussions are also underway to increase the attractiveness of the event for families, with packages on offer to visit the resort’s attractions.

Our Saturday night dinner which will be held in the world famous Blackpool Tower Ballroom – what a wow-factor – is open to all who wish to purchase tickets and will be a night to remember with drinks reception table wine, dancing to ‘Storm Party Band’ and also a Strictly Come Dancing-type cabaret.

“The conclusion of the event is the presentation of the trophies on Sunday afternoon, which will take place on the promenade in front of the Blackpool Tower.”

For more details, call 01753 631170 or email [email protected]. Visit www.ukcoachrally.co.uk.