Movers and suppliers to the moving industry gathered in Leicestershire on 2 and 3 November for The 2016 Movers & Storers Show.
After three years at Silverstone’s famous Wing building the show moved to a new home: the recently renovated Hanger-42 at Bruntingthorpe proving ground, a former WW2 air station a few miles north of Lutterworth, deep in the Leicestershire countryside.
The mighty war planes that defended the nation are thankfully long gone, but there is still an air of nostalgia within the hanger’s walls and the feeling that the ghost of ‘Ginger’ in his sheepskin flying jacket and boots is still looking on.
Hanger-42’s huge 36,000 sqft floor area meant the exhibition could easily be staged on one level with trucks, vans and containers sharing the space with stands, representing a wide variety of services from software to packaging and insurance. This gave the impression that the show was bigger than the Silverstone events, which had to be staged on three levels.
The layout was completely transformed, with the café space – dubbed the ‘R Lounge’ in a nod to sponsor Reason Global – situated right at the entrance. A relaxed, comfortable feel was a feature of the show in many areas, with beanbags in the Buzzmove Web & Social Media Clinic and lounge chairs in the Seminar Theatre.
The programme of free seminars - sponsored by The Mover magazine - was themed around the idea of looking 3-4 years into the future and considering how business will change. Attendance was good for all sessions, with particular highlights being Damien Seaman’s honest and incisive presentation on lead generation, Gordon Rafferty’s look at the ‘man and van’ business model, and James Backhouse’s considered talk on Brexit and its implications for the transport industry. The Mover’s Editor Steve Jordan wound up the presentations by taking a not too serious look at how people might move in the far distant future. Scary stuff!
As in previous shows, teams competed for the highly contested Packer of the Year Award, sponsored by Britannia Reeves. The winners were MGR Removals for an impressive third year running, with Wotton of Tiverton hot on their heels in second place. There was also a fun contest to build an archive box, with prizes going to anyone who could beat 20 seconds. The winner – Laura Yardley from Bespoke Bodies – recorded an incredible time of 14.88 seconds.
The 2016 show also saw the launch of a new competition to find Britain’s Strongest Removalist, sponsored by Britannia Movers International. Although the organisers struggled to find willing contestants the competition proved to be a popular spectacle as visitors watched some of the industry’s most powerful men tackle feats of strength, including a truck-pull, to decide the winner. The competition, which looks set to be a regular feature of the show, was won by Sam Pierre from Britannia Reeves, with second place going to David Mercer from United Movers.
Attendance was steady across the two days, with a total of 598 visitors being welcomed during the event. While the organisers would have liked to have seen more people coming through the doors, exhibitors were still kept busy and a huge number of orders were placed on-site. Bespoke Bodies had a truck for sale on their stand but - to the disappointment of many - it was snapped up early on the first morning!
Show organiser Charlotte Parslow said, “We’ve had a fantastic couple of days here at Bruntingthorpe. A lot of company owners and managers have attended the show, visitors seem to have stayed on-site for much longer than they did at Silverstone, and many exhibitors have been reporting increased leads and sales compared to last year’s event.”
Dates for the next Movers & Storers Show will be announced soon.
New services from Bespoke Bodies
Bespoke Bodies had a successful Movers & Storers Show with John Sturt from the company reporting a number of direct sales of vehicles from the stand.
The company has also recently started to provide additional services to its customers. These include providing servicing and MOTs for local companies, and offering a vehicle survey service in which a mechanic from the company will inspect a second-hand vehicle that is being bought to have a new body fitted for a customer. The mechanic will provide a full report on vehicles prior to purchase to help customers make wise choices.
Bespoke Bodies provides vehicles for sale from stock and also offers a rental service, short or long-term. This can be useful to help customers during the busy summer months or if a vehicle is off the road being repaired.
Photo: Bespoke Bodies at The Movers & Storers Show