This year's Pride of Longbridge 'the best attended'

By Tristan Harris Monday 14 April 2014 Updated: 16/04 14:41

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Buy photos » Registered Cooper! - Mick Rowley and Dave Coulson with a 1968 Austin Mini Cooper Mark II. Pictures by Tristan Harris.

THIS year's Pride of Longbridge (POL) Rally in Cofton Park on Saturday (April 12) was the best-attended in its nine year history after 2,800 people went along to the event.

The annual event, which began after the collapse of MG Rover, saw hundreds of car enthusiasts from all over the country and even as far as Belgium and Holland bring a multitude of vehicles 'back home' to where they were built.

Among the motors on show were everything from Minis, Metros and Allegros to Autin 7s, MGs and Rovers.

Dave Coulson, who used to manufacture engines at the Longbridge plant, was there in his 1968 Austin Mini Cooper Mark II.

The Mercia Minis club member told The Standard: "I was there for 21 years, so it's like coming home."

John Collins and his aptly-named son Austin from Tamworth went to the event in their MG.

Mr Collins is a member of the MG Owners' Club and the MG Car Club and said, although he had been to several events, this was their first POL.

"It's great to see so many great cars and so many friendly people.

"Cofton Park is also a nice venue for an event like this."

Organiser Gemma Cartwright said this year had the biggest turn-outs of ex-workforce, enthusiasts and the POL community.

"It was great to listen to people sharing their stories to the enthusiasts about what part they worked on and seeing the pride in their eyes, which is exactly what the day is about.

"The event was bigger and better than ever this year, thanks to the enthusiasm of everyone who brought along their cars and the fantastic number of visitors.

"I'd like to say a big thanks to Frankley Carnival for their support, along with ALF, the group's chairman John Baker, MG UK, Steve Collins and the Rover Enthusiasts for their experts and all the volunteers who helped make it such a success," she said.

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