Events : Preview – Pride of Longbridge 2013

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Updated, Keith Adams

Pride of Longbridge 2012 - more than 1000 vehicles attended the show
Pride of Longbridge 2012 – more than 1000 vehicles attended the show

The annual Pride of Longbridge  event is now the UK’s pre-eminent classic car event for lovers of ‘The Firm’s’ vehicles. This year it takes place on 13 April, on the Cofton Park, over the road from the MG Motor UK factory in Longbridge. If you haven’t been before, it’s a huge gathering, well worth the trip – and, if you have a BL, BMC or Rover-flavoured vehicle, you’ll be made very welcome indeed.

If you are intending to come along to PoL, why not volunteer to marshal for a couple of hours? No-one other than the core committee is expected to be on duty all day but if you can commit to an hour or two, you will be helping to save this unique and wonderful event. Please contact ALF Chairman John Baker on: ausfederation@talktalk.net

Pride of Longbridge is now in its eighth year and continues to grow. In 2012, more than 1100 cars turned up and filled the field – and this year it’s hoped that there will be more than 1200. AROnline will be there in force and we’ll be gathering on the field, showing off our cars – and talking the talk to anyone who fancies it. Editor, Keith Adams, will now be in Germany covering Techno-Classica Essen for our just-launched new sister website, Honest John Classics, but the AROnline Editorial Team will be represented by Commercials and Features Editor Mike Humble, Contributing Editor Clive Goldthorp and Contributor Adam Sloman.

Admission to Cofton Park will be free but any AROnline readers who have not been to PoL before should note that only those BMC>MG models associated with Longbridge are allowed access to the site – drivers of non-BMC>MG models will, as usual, park on the roads adjacent to Cofton Park – and that each BMC>MG model has a specially-designated parking area to which the Marshals will direct you. The model-by-model clusters carry so much more photographic impact and there will not therefore be a designated parking area for AROnline’s readers.

However, in order to ensure that all of you who attend PoL have a chance to ‘Meet the Team’, Gemma Cartwright of the PoL Organising Team, has kindly agreed to give us some space in the PoL gazebo – you will be able to find Mike, Clive and Adam there between 12noon and 12.45pm so do call by for a chat.

The chaps will, if the weather permits, also be running a photographic competition – if you are a member of AROnline’s Facebook Group, you will probably already know about the up and coming trend of ‘Woollarding‘ which pays homage to the once legendary Top Gear presenter whose programme sign-off pose, with one foot calmly resting on the bumper of a featured car, looks the epitome of cool even to this day. The best Woollards will win a small prize – just dig out that beige car coat and your freshly-ironed slacks. All you need to do is register with Mike, Clive or Adam in the PoL gazebo at the above-mentioned time.

See you there!

POL Park Layout Final_Version 2013

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

24 Comments

  1. In 2012 I attended PoL for the first time and it was worth making a three hour trip up from East Devon.

    Last year they had special display areas for the MGB and ADO16, which were both celebrating their fiftieth anniversary. However, there was a noticeable absence of Rover 600s (its twentieth birthday this year) and MG RV8s. Even the Streetwise, SD3 Rover 200 Series and the Mini seemed to be short on the ground compared to the Metro.

    I have heard there will be a special display area for Triumphs and Rileys this year, to encourage a few more of them to attend.

    PoL really does show how to organise a great vehicle gathering – no need to book in advance, no entry fee to pay and no need to turn up in something which is either completely standard or immaculate. It also has a very friendly and informal atmosphere. Moreover, it is an event that also enables the generation gap between the ‘more senior and traditional’ classic vehicle enthusiast and those of a ‘younger age and with a more expressive outlook’ on getting the most out of their cars to be blurred. Many other organised events can’t achieve this!

    For me, as someone who loves the Rover marque, it was great to see so many 75s, a few classic P4s, P5s, P6s and SD1s, the eccentrc 200 BRM LE turning up en mass and a special line-up of the 200 Coupe (in 2012) to reaffirm that I am not in isolation in appreciating this great name.

    I will likely attend again this year, but this time will be taking my late registered Ignition Blue MG ZR.

  2. @ Tony Turner:

    That is also a rare car you have too, as the GTi variant had been in production for just eighteen months before the arrival of the MG ZR range signalled the end of its production. I have always had a soft-spot for the 25 GTi as it was such an underrated car in relation to the MG ZR160.

    Look forward to seeing it at PoL.

  3. @ David 3500

    Well, I’ve always enjoyed Q cars that are a bit faster than they look and this one fits the bill – just a shame other road users pull out in front of it, assuming it’s travelling at ‘normal’ R25 speeds :-). Anyway, look forward to meeting you there.

  4. Owing to work and family commitments, my soon be announced ‘project’ car may not be mobile in time.

    I do have a steer to avoid my Xanita avoiding the French B&Q car park shame by borrowing a ’77 MGB GT I recommissioned last year after a lengthy storage period.

    Now then… where’s that ruddy tow rope????

  5. I enjoyed last year, it was my first visit I brought along the slegti, the Romania rat rod car that Keith loved so much.
    But this year ill still be in a R8 but this time my 25 thousand miles gsi as the slegti is now probably on it’s Way to be a new fridge freezer.
    It would be great for the AROnline followers to meet up and chew the fat so to speak

  6. I’m definitely going again this year. Already advised John Baker of the Austin Longbridge Federation and booked a hotel! My ZR has had the above poster in the window for the past two or three weeks. I’ve got my daughter again that weekend so she’s coming too as she did last year. Now 12 years old and still understands my obsession!

  7. I’ll be there in my lovely 1961 Rover 100 (P4). Keith you should bring the Renault 18 onto the park rather than hiding it at B&Q, it’ll be nice to see it having read about it! Last year the “Car of the show” for me was a Rover SD1 police car, I walked up to it thinking it’d be a replica but it turned out to be a totally original car, never resprayed, still original police livery & still belonged to the police so in effect it was still an official police car that could be driven on the road with all it’s police signs, lights & sirens!

  8. @4 David 3500 – I’ve never heard of the R25 GTi, just the MG ZR variants, but it sounds like an interesting motor. I wonder what colour Tony’s is… I guess Trophy Blue / Le mans Green & Trophy yellow were not available then.

  9. I shall be travelling up from North Devon in my Mini Cooper MPi, I’ve been every year since 2007 and it’s a very good day! Just seems a very long drive home afterwards…

  10. @ Hilton D – It’s a red 3-door (sorry, can neer remember what the shade is called – it’s quite bright though 😉 )

  11. @16 Tony – thanks for that. I think the last MG Rover solid red was called “Rio Red” but that wasn’t quite as bright as previous colours. I suspect yours was an earlier brighter tone and all the better for it!

  12. @ Hilton D:

    Trophy Blue and Trophy Yellow were MG only colours, first introduced on the MGF Trophy 160 SE in January 2001 and also used as two of the six launch colours for the MG Z range which went on sale from the following July.

    The Rover 25 GTi was offered in the following colours: Anthracite, British Racing Green, Platinum Silver, Sienna Gold, Solar Red and Tahiti Blue. The GTi variant looked similar to the lower specification models in the 25 line-up, apart from having colour-coded bumper inserts (the bodyside strips remained in neutral dark grey), black-finish radiator grille vanes, colour-coded roof spoiler and 16-inch ‘Active’ alloy wheels (exactly the same design that would be known later as the ‘Hairpins’ design on the MG Z saloons). It went on sale from December 1999 and remained in production up until approximately May/June 2001. The new price was £13,495 for a 3-door version.

    The 25 GTi was a very underrated car and was also the last sporting variant to wear the Rover longship badge, unfortunately.

    Yes, Rio Red was the last shade of solid red MG Rover Group introduced, which debuted on the facelifted Rover 25 and 45, MG ZR and ZS from their launch and on the recently facelifted Rover 75 and MG ZT from late Spring 2004.

  13. @19 David – thanks for a comprehensive answer. Yes, I remember now “Solar Red” – nicer than Rio Red I think. I used to own a R400 in Tahiti Blue, a 45 in Platinum Silver and a ZS in X Power grey. Mine had the 16″ Hairpins alloys you mention. I still like looking at photos of that car!

  14. Thinking about going this year in my Mini, can you just turn up anytime in the day or do you have to be there for the start as I probably can’t get there till 12ish?

  15. Really choked that im unable to attend due to work,i will be going to the next event without question.

  16. Had a brilliant time at Pride of Longbridge today and it was nice to meet Mike and Clive and have a chat with them.

    Congratulations to thebrm.co.uk for managing to beat their previous record of 27 for the number of Rover 200 BRM LEs gathered at one venue. This year they managed to bring together 29 cars in what is the fiftieth anniversary year when the Rover-BRM gas turbine race car was first demonstrated at Le Mans.

    Some lovely Minis too, particlarly the Mini ERA and Clubman Estate, and also lots of interesting Metros owned by a lot of young enthusiasts.

    Let us hope for better weather for 2014 where more of the site can be utilised and hopefully even more cars turn up, as the organisers really do have a winning recipe when it comes to laying on a friendly and interesting show.

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