Four years in the planning, the inaugural Bromyard Speed Festival which took place on Sunday 3rd April has already been voted a huge success by the organisers, the participants, the thousands of visitors who attended, and the Bromyard business community, and the key event sponsors, Brightwells, Holden Vintage & Classic, Mintex and Morgan Cars.
Blessed with near perfect weather, over 5000 visitors were treated to a truly amazing display of over 170 entries embracing everything from pure race and rally cars, through a selection of iconic classic cars, vintage vehicles, and superb motorcycles which displayed during both the morning and afternoon sessions. Morgan had a big presence as the featured marquee, this year celebrating Bromyard as the birthplace of the original three wheeler. Undoubted star of the show was the Sunbeam 'Blue Bird' land speed record car from 1924, direct from Beaulieu which rattled the windows of the town on numerous runs up the High Street.
This dynamic new event required an army of truly amazing volunteers who in the early hours of Sunday morning constructed a street circuit through the main streets of Bromyard's town centre, with marshals and stewards to control all the safety aspects, while other volunteers controlled the paddock, car parking and all other aspects of the Festival.� Nothing like this had ever been tried before in Bromyard, but they made it a reality, and they certainly made it work.
The Festival got off to a roaring start with Bromyard's own highly successful race and rally driver Barrie 'Whizzo' Williams cutting the tape at 10.00 am, and then leading the first batch of Morgan cars in his championship winning Mini Cooper 'S'. Each group of cars circulated the street circuit behind a pace car, for a number of laps.� This format provided the visitors, especially the photographers among them, terrific opportunities for taking close up action photographs.� The visitors had been able to attend the Festival free of charge including car parking and it is not surprising that thousands took advantage of this unique opportunity, with many travelling substantial distances specifically for the Festival and staying for the day.
Publicity support from both national and local media had been tremendously helpful in putting Bromyard 'on the map',with a BBC Midlands film crew spending most of the day at the Bromyard Speed Festival, resulting in a feature appearing on the Midlands Today news programme on Sunday evening. With thousands of visitors filing the streets of Bromyard's town centre, the local traders were delighted to be able to� benefit from brisk trading, with some almost running out of drinks and food!
The event directors and organising team who are also volunteers, will now review this year's event in order to plan the next Bromyard Speed Festival, and will announce firm details within the next few weeks.