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Inside story

Oct 12, 2016
An interview with Charlotte Parslow and Keith Merrett, organisers of The Movers & Storers Show, as the 2016 event approaches.

It’s only a few weeks now until the start of The Movers and Storers Show on 1st and 2nd November.  Charlotte Parslow and Keith Merrett conceived the idea and have been organising the event since 2008, so are pretty experienced at it by now.  But still, the run up to the show can be a busy and stressful time.  

“Our planning is pretty much done now, but the build day is usually pretty crazy,” said Keith.  “Our whole team will be on-site, and we’ll be project managing the build, our own office set up, staff briefings, and exhibitor queries.”    

“We handle a lot of visitor calls and emails on the build day as well,” added Charlotte. “In reality, most people decide whether or not to come to the show at the last minute, so we get a lot of queries and last minute registrations. If you call us on Monday 31st, please bear with us, as we’ll probably be doing 18 things at once.”  

Keith said that his main worry this year is whether people will struggle to find the new venue at Bruntingthorpe.  “It’s only 10 minutes from the M1, and we’ve paid for AA event signage to give people a hand.”  Although Bruntingthorpe appears to be a little out of the way, it’s a well-known venue so it’s unlikely that anyone will have any real problems.  “I always get very stressed that nobody will turn up! It’s a recurring nightmare for me,” said Charlotte.  “I’m always so relieved on the first day once we’ve had a couple of hundred people through the door.”   

This year the show will be a mix of the traditional and some new events to provide something of interest for everyone.  Charlotte said she is particularly looking forward to the Britain’s Strongest Removalist competition. “All those muscles …. The Packer of the Year Contest too. I absolutely love the competitions, and how involved everyone gets.”  

Keith, by contrast, being a ‘diesel head’ at heart, likes the truck display. “We understand that the Commercial Vehicle Show had fewer trucks than normal this year, and we’re really proud of the fact that we’ve managed to increase the number of vehicles on display. It’s going to look spectacular.”   

Every year the show provides something different and Keith and Charlotte work really hard to make sure it’s always fresh. Charlotte explained that it’s important for her to work really closely with the event sponsors to keep things feeling exciting. “I’m looking forward to seeing the Reason Global Lounge this year, and also the Buzzmove Web & Social Media Clinic. You can expect iPads, beanbags, and a lovely relaxed vibe. And some red sofas, naturally.”   

“I think it’s the bigger changes which keep the show interesting,” said Keith. “Changing venue every few years helps – it gives us an opportunity for a complete redesign of the space, so we can apply all the lessons we’ve learned over the years.”   

So why is The Movers and Storers Show important?  Why is it important that you go along in November? “This is such a ‘people’ industry, relationships are so vital in this sector,” said Keith.  “We provide a place for movers and storers to meet with each other and their suppliers and talk – it’s as simple as that.”  

“I also believe the show has a role to play in terms of education, and helping the smaller operators improve and expand, be it via seminars or advice from suppliers,” said Charlotte. “And of course there is a PR benefit – the more high profile The Movers & Storers Show can be, the more members of the public may start to understand the professionalism of this industry and focus less on price.”   

The Movers and Storers Show takes place at Bruntingthorpe Aerodrome, close to junction 20 on the M1, on 1st and 2nd November 2016.  Don’t miss it.   

Photo: Keith and Charlotte have been organising The Movers & Storers Show since 2008.

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