Get on board for CPT’s Ride & Drive

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The mini Ride & Drive North event was held at Newcastle College. JONATHAN WELCH

Jonathan Welch called in at the CPT’s ‘mini’ Ride & Drive event in Newcastle recently, and found himself having a go too

Who doesn’t like the chance to socialise, catch up with industry colleagues, and have a play with some of the latest new toys? For CPT members in the south of the country, its long-running ‘Ride & Drive’ event held annually at North Weald airfield has offered the opportunity for just that. This year the trade association decided to expand and try a northern ride and drive event to coincide with its black tie regional dinner in Newcastle on Saturday 9 March.

Despite the miserable weather which followed me up the A1, I arrived slightly early at the easy to find venue. Just outside the city centre, the CPT had taken over the main car park of Newcastle College, where Dawsongroup and EVM had a display of vehicles and Stagecoach had set up a driver challenge using one of its driver trainer converted Alexander ALX300 MAN 18.220s.

Having been welcomed by a number of familiar CPT faces, including manager for the northern region Andrew McGuinness, and watched the first couple of drivers take on the driving challenge, I was invited to take part myself. I boarded the 20 year old MAN along with Omnibus founder and classic bus owner Peter Crichton, who would take his turn after me. No pressure.

EVM’s Visigo was available for short drives. JONATHAN WELCH

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