RUMCars Forum

General Category => Microcar Events => Topic started by: Big Al on October 08, 2014, 11:29:50 AM

Title: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on October 08, 2014, 11:29:50 AM
I was pleased to receive an unsolicited communication from the venue I had targeted as a possible venue for a Microcar Rally. Nothing like getting off on the right foot, as they were clearly very pleased I had attended a meeting they held. Further they were pleased I created a separate centre of attraction, just by being there and doing what I do.

So with the situation hot, I have made my play to see if they are interested in being the centre of a slightly more complex way of organising a National, or International, Microcar event in 2016. The suggestion is within the bounds of what I know has previously been done there, but not all at once, and not in this way. As a starting point I am looking at a 4 day commitment, using as base, a medium sized camp site located on the edge of town, but in the Cotswolds area. This should provide plenty for non micronauts to do, while offering the cars a great area to mess around in. Its our old stomping ground and easy to get to, save if your far North. It is an acceptable distance for visitors coming in from abroad, to, with a lot of B and B accommodation. The big thing here is it should be possible to offer micro driving visitors abroad free entry to the rally itself, as was traditionally the case years ago. Certainly an effort to make the expedition interesting has to be made. Our friends from other countries add spice to a successful event.   

The difficulty is that the nature of this event will mean that places to take part in the event will be restricted and have to be booked prior to the event. Quite what space is available has yet to be established, but I think we are looking at 125 to 150 cars. The catch is it will be very good value for those who attend the whole shebang. Those who fail to apply will probably miss the entire thing, part attendance is to waste an opportunity. The bonus to the entrant is once paid up he need not pay for anything else, unless he wishes too. This all paid entry includes a meal for all on Saturday night, in licensed premises, with no need to drive for most folk, despite being off site. Indeed the event promises to keep folk moving, if they want to be involved in what is going on.

I think this is the starting point for the sort of event needed to revitalize a hobby. But it depends in the belief of the host sites in our ability to support such an event. So it founders if they do not. It also fails if there is not demonstrable support from the Microcar world if they agree to host , and we are not talking money here. I do not think this event will cost a great deal to initiate.

For instance, to gain the venue, it will require a certain number of cars to be available for a photo-shoot to produces images to advertise the event in the media. Failure to provide a good set of cars will immediately diminish the potential result. That this photo-shoot can be an event in its own right is a separate issue. So this is not an OBE (Other Bu**ers Efforts) event. It will require input from a lot of people. It will test if the Microcar, and which type, is alive or dead as an active thing to be doing.

Done, and a success, it sets the thing up for some much more imaginative events in the future. Indeed the template I am suggesting for these hosts is repeatable, and not just for Microcars.

So I await the first of the answers needed as to if this idea and plan is a goer with some interest. 
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: DaveMiller on October 08, 2014, 01:04:33 PM
So I await the first of the answers needed as to if this idea and plan is a goer with some interest.

A lot of plausible positives, there, Al - but you don't tell us what we need to know, to decide whether we're interested.

Four days?  Which four days?
Free for foreign visitors - but likely how much for us? (And does the free offer really affect attendance, bearing in mind the overall costs of travel from abroad, plus the legal difficulties of 'indirect' racial discrimination?)
Cotswolds? What advantages, specifically, does it offer us?  (OK, some history, but not a particularly inspiring place for motoring around. And particularly dear, usually!)

Sorry to appear negative - I'm not actually against the idea at all - but it's difficult among the "posifluff" to find facts to consider.

Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on October 08, 2014, 05:42:15 PM
Good questions

In all probability Thursday to Sunday in school holidays. But why paint into a corner at this point.

The prices are looking like less than currently charged for Nationals, using published figures. But again how can I quote at such a distance.

What? Racial discrimination? Now I really have heard it all. Are British Microcar owners a race? Might explain a lot mind you. Its that bubbleheaded cranium, your honour! Ears for wheels, eyes for headlights. OK, we will charge attendance in Euros and the Germans will promise not to bomb the chip shop, that gets round that one. I do not believe what I am reading.

Cotswolds offer no immediate advantage whatsoever over other prime locations, save being in the middle of the south of the country and near where the initial organising group live. More importantly its where the opportunity is. Sadly I cannot move that, even if I wanted to. Its a peculiar set of circumstances not even realised by those asked to host the event. An opportunity has been spotted, we get in first we get to have the best of it. Yet if the Micronauts drop the ball it might yet pass to some other group I am involved with to reap the benefit.
The Cotswolds is one of the internationally recognised landscapes Britain possesses. There are therefore a lot of interesting places that might be visited or experience, enabled of something normally unavailable to the public. The aim of the event is a blend of those and the topography of the area all contained within the cost of attending the event, so you do not have to pay to enter each place. The downside is that removes the option to do the event cheaper than the fixed price by dropping parts of it. However if the fixed price has taken all the advantages of the bulk purchase we can use, then it will represent a real bargain you would never be able to match on your own. A bargain is a bargain, but good events cost money. I would rather have one cracking event than spend several weekends in windswept fields in the middle of nowhere at the same price. Those that disagree will not be coming, so it does not matter.

I am not going to release any facts until I have agreement from the hosting entities. To many times I have got a good situation going only to have someone stick their nose in and muck things up. Be that spares, manufacturing or events. Besides what facts there are currently are few. This is notification of intent. If and when the event gains form with support from the hosts it will be clearer to see the layout, costs and options. At that point the meat can be put on the bones to try and respond to what people want, out of what is available. There are probably 3 weeks worth of activities within range of here, so we want the best varied option we can do at a projected value.

So, to clarify, the answers I look to with interest at the moment are from the hosts, rather than micronauts. I agree, the Micronaut has little to comment on, other than a general idea. Though info and feedback is always welcome. I have no idea on timing for their answer. It will not be quick, I expect, as its complex and requires several board meetings of several entities to happen. That is what it takes to access a prime site or two. That is why I play for 2016 and not next year so there is time to put together something good.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Jean on October 08, 2014, 06:22:41 PM
Alan, should you not at least be talking to the National Microcar Rally Committee to get their feed back.  In past years  since they were first set they have done more to support our hobby  right from the very early historic 'Burford' days.   United we stand !Jean
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on October 08, 2014, 08:50:19 PM
Indeed, hopefully there might be positive feedback allowing the facts to be presented in a firm offer come the 'end of term' meeting. I would not want to divert attention from next year's event with something that does not exist for the following one. I know what criteria they have for a 'standard' rally, if you like. If I did not know, it was refreshed by attending the meeting last year. These basics are built into this one, if all parties agree. If it was not for the need of quite sophisticated camping facilities, it would be very much simpler! So quail not, the campervan owner, I am thinking of you despite my rants against your favour.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Rusty Chrome (Malcolm Parker) on October 09, 2014, 12:16:53 AM
I agree with Jean, but Thursday to Sunday during the school holidays sounds very good to me (providing its at the start or middle and not at the very end of). Planning for something two years in advance also gives more time to try and build up something special. Hope it comes off.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on October 09, 2014, 07:46:39 AM
Well the traditional time for a National, if that is what it is to be, is early September. There is normally a weekend after the August Bank holiday and before Beaulieu in September. That is prime National weekend. This very topic being restated at last years NMCR meeting. The fact the date of that years rally slipped later was a product of the calender not providing the normal extra weekend, pushing events together onto clashing weekends and having to take dates available to organisers coming in to insure there was an event. Clearly they were somewhat hostage to the opportunities available in their area. An immediate and obvious reason for a dip in attendance.

There used to be a call for an event in the Spring. Story was every other year. There were events put on, particularly by the Micro Maniacs. Yet April/May offers much and a surfeit of bank holidays. The thinking has been folk use bank holidays for family events. The big spring rally, bank holiday or not, has never taken off here. In Germany and such they do have big car events on them. So maybe we are doing it wrong. I could not say.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: AndyL on October 09, 2014, 12:31:14 PM
Rather than pitch it as a 'national' event, just pitch as a Cotswold micro car rally.

If you advertise or market it as a National event, then you are running the real risk of creating what many may view as a competing event, rather than a complimentary addition to the micro car calendar.

I haven't attended a micro car rally for a very long time, however i will say this, the ones I enjoyed the most were the ones that were kept very straightforward in format, and the emphasis was using the cars, rather than parking them up and polishing them in field.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on October 09, 2014, 06:39:33 PM
If you want to use your car, then this event will be for you, as each day will offer driving options to those attending. Part of the prob these days is not everyone wants to be on the road all the time, though. So a menu has to be created to cater for light cars/cars in use, puddlejumpers and walking wounded who phisically would not cover the milage the first lot will in the given time, and to keep the none driving happy with other distractions. But here the bias will be on MOTed, running cars doing things. Another reason for a long run up so folk can achieve a car reliable enough to maximise their fun. A reason to invite those who can, and will, drive from far distance, to attend.
Title: Re: Potential 'National' Microcar Rally
Post by: Big Al on March 23, 2015, 08:35:26 AM
I can now confirm that the venues involved find that choreographing their input is to difficult to achieve. Yet all are eager to grab the action for there own organisation. Short of a serious bit of Microcar organisation, with back up to force the factions into compliance, its not going to work. Pity as the outlying support stop stuff I had started to line up was supportive and interesting. There was agreement to turn the huge fountain on at the foot of a Cotswold for us. Big photo opportunity.  A private road access won ( might have had issue with the bigger Bonds) etc etc. Just shows that the basic idea was good, but several egos outside control determined to get in the way, so it cannot happen. Might be that the spin off is one element attempts their own event. Fine, good luck with that.
Sometimes saying no brings reflective compliance, but I fear not in this case. Pity.