Posts Tagged ‘@saligray’

Just two more sleeps… until the 2016 Pink Car Rally, a #CoastalConvoy travelling from Southend-on-Sea to Hunstanton.  I was delighted to have been interviewed this week by NorthNorfolkRadio.  I’m hoping that the interview will find some more Pink Car owners who might like to join the rally.  This is where we will be… and when…

10th & 11th September

The route and where to find us – although we’ll be hard to miss!
Please note, due to the number of miles we will be travelling, all times are approximate, but we will aim to keep everyone informed of our progress via our Pink Car Rally Facebook page & our Twitter accounts @pinkcarrally and @saligray so please ‘follow’ to catch our tweets.

Saturday 10th September – Leg 1

Southend-on-Sea to Lowestoft

9/9.30am       Arrive Southend on Sea – City Beach, Marine Parade, SS1 2EJ (approx. postcode)
10.30am         Depart Southend on the A127/A12
11.45/12noon Arrive Colchester – B&Q carpark, Lightship Way, CO2 8FR
1pm                 Depart Colchester on the A12/A1214
1.45/2pm        Arrive Ipswich – Treehouse Children’s Hospice IP3 8NS
3pm                 Depart Ipswich on the A1214/A12
4.30/4.45pm   Arrive Lowestoft – ASDA Superstore carpark, off Horn Hill, NR33 0PX
5.30pm            End of day 1 of the rally

Overnight stay and Pinkie Dinner in Lowestoft

Sunday 11th September – Leg 2

Great Yarmouth to Hunstanton

9/9.30am         Arrive Great Yarmouth – Tesco Southtown NR31 0DW
10.30am           Depart Great Yarmouth on the A149
11.45/12noon  Arrive Cromer – Tesco Sherinham NR26 8RY
1pm                  Leave Cromer on the A149
2.30/2.45pm   Arrive Hunstanton – Tesco Superstore, Southend Road, PE36 5AR
3.30pm             End of day 2 of the rally

Raising awareness of, and funds for, the Little Princess Trust charity.
Raising funds for ‘real hair’ wigs for children and young adults.
Find us on Facebook  More information can be found on our website

 

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“Kiss Me Quick” will be the 2015 rallying cry, as the Pink Procession heads #Coast2Coast on a #SeasideSpecial:-

Blackpool to Scarborough Fair – 5th & 6th September.

Yes my dear readers, we’re off again…. the 8th annual Pink Car Rally will be parading in a pretty pink procession across Britain, on a #SeasideSpecial – #Coast2Coast #Blackpool2ScarboroughFair #SoManyHashtags  #SoMuchExcitement!

The rally raises awareness of, and funds for, the Little Princess Trust charity, which gives ‘real hair’ wigs to children and young adults in the UK and Ireland who lose their hair, primarily through cancer treatment.

Pink Cars will be popping up all over Blackpool on the weekend of the #BigSwitchOn and I have to say that we are already overly excited! I’m wondering whether we will be able to entice any ‘celebrities’ into our cars, for some pink publicity photos? Especially with The Vamps being the headline act on the Friday evening!  I might just start a Facebook campaign to see whether we can persuade them to participate in some pink publicity for a very good cause.

The official start of the 8th Annual Pink Car Rally will be at 10.30am on Saturday 5th September, with the Pinkies starting to gather from 9am in St John’s Square, Blackpool and we’re hoping that lots of people will come to see our pretty pink cars, which will be dressed-up for the occasion!! (As will we!)  Sunglasses may be required (rose-tinted of course) because our shiny cars are dazzlingly bright – rather like the illuminations themselves!

From Blackpool, we will head to Leeds Children’s Hospital, so that the young patients on the oncology ward can see our pink cars, before heading towards York where we will make a ‘final stop’ of the day at Monks Cross Shopping Centre, providing the press and the public with another opportunity to pop along to ‘pap’ the Pinkies!

Day 2 of the rally will see the Pinkies gathering at the Clifton Moor Shopping Park, York (exact car-park to be confirmed – although I doubt anyone could miss us!) from 9.30am for the official start of the rally at 10.30am.  Look out for us on the A64 as we head towards Scarborough, where we will drive past the train station before turning right and heading out of Scarborough, over the Valley Bridge, on the A165 towards Filey.  We should arrive at Scarborough Fair at around 1pm. . We would LOVE to see you there! We’ll be in the car-park…. you really can’t miss us! Well – our cars will be in the car-park! We might have slipped inside to see the fabulous #Wurlitzers and to enjoy some well earned refreshments!

“Are YOU going to Scarborough Fair?”

Click here for the 2015 Route

If you (or any of your friends/family) have a Pink Car and you would like to take part in the rally, please comment below.

If you are unable to come to the rally, but would like to make a donation, here is our JustGivingTeam link

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It’s exactly 240 days since my last blog post. Why the long delay? I was hoping to write blog updates about the progress of the 2014 rally, but until a few weeks ago no progress had been made. In September, a ‘save the date’ announcement (7th & 8th September) was made and in October I had created an outline route and contacted the two ‘major’ comfort/media stops, seeking permission to use their car-parks. Frustratingly, it took until July for one to agree and the other still hasn’t said yes or no! I must take responsibility for some of this. I run my own business and I am a single parent to three young adults, so rally planning is done in my ‘free time’, which is usually in the evenings…. leaving me unable to make lots of badgering phone calls in office hours and at a disadvantage to large charities with dedicated fundraising teams.

During a recent business meeting with someone from the area local to the proposed rally route, I was asked how the rally was progressing. When I explained the ‘challenges, he brought google maps up on his computer and suggested an alternative venue in the area. Initially enquiries didn’t hold out much hope, but I’m forever the optimist and so I emailed a heartfelt request and, to my delight (and great relief) it was met with a resounding ‘yes’, so I’m in the process of finalising the route which should be announced in the next few days.

One of my frustrations with the Pink Car Rally initiative is the lack of national media support. Another is my inability to attract a major celebrity. The rally has enormous potential, but without these two key elements, I fear it may never reach it. Never has this been more evident than in the comparison between our rally and Chris Evans’ FAB1 initiative. How many people, new to the rally, know that in 2012 the Pink Car Rally travelled from John O’Groats to Land’s End, over six days, raising over £16k for the Little Princess Trust charity, which gives ‘real hair’ wigs to children and young people who have lost their own hair, primarily through chemotherapy? The national media didn’t want the story without a ‘hook’ although we were well supported by regional newspapers, social media and local radio. We targeted Chris Evans, because of his love of cars, but the BBC stated that we were not one of their ‘chosen’ charities, so couldn’t help! In 2013 Chris Evans created the FAB1 initiative, travelling from Land’s End to John O’Groats to a huge fanfare and media frenzy. The national media couldn’t get enough of the story. I travelled to Cribbs Causeway to see him and his entourage and was rewarded with a smile and a wave. Later, when he passed Blossom on the motorway, he pointed, smiled and waved again. Hopefully he saw the Pink Car Rally website address on the side of my car! I do love Chris Evans and have enormous respect for what he has achieved, but I’m sure you – like me – can see the irony.

So here I am in August, just a few weeks away from the 7th annual Pink Car Rally, praying that we can get enough media interest to swell the number of pink participants at this late stage. And you, dear reader, can help us by sharing this blog far and wide, RT’ing our tweets and ‘liking and sharing’ our Facebook page. If you happen to know a celebrity, please, please, encourage them to support us.

One organisation has been particularly supportive of the Pink Car Rally this year. I met Motorhappy on Twitter and they have been absolutely amazing… to the point that they turned Twitter pink for a day!  I can’t tell you how #Motorhappy that made me! 

I would just like to finish this blog post by saying a massive THANK YOU to Motorhappy and everyone else who has supported the rally. We have over 3000 likes on our Facebook page, from over 40 countries. Between my Twitter account and the Pink Car Rally Twitter account, we have nearly 3000 followers. We appreciate each and every ‘share’ and RT. Thank you.

Pink pit stop during 2013 rally

Pink pit stop during 2013 rally

 

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I perhaps should confess that I had never heard of Old Down Manor a few weeks ago! But then Blossom’s friend Candy the Pink Hyundai changed her Facebook profile photo to one showing her parked outside a fabulous venue – Old Down Manor.

So, I googled Old Down and read all about the Manor, the Country Park, the Bistro, the Cafe and their forthcoming Christmas Fair.  It all sounded so fabulous, that I took Blossom down to Tockington (South Glos) to find out more. Well lunch was a massive success – you probably saw my tweet? I loved the tiny Pigmy Kids and the Manor House looked amazing – at least it did from the outside! I enquired about the Christmas Fair, explaining about the Pink Car Rally Charity Calendars and they kindly squeezed me in!

Blossom was gleaming when we left this morning and positively preening by the time we pulled up at the Manor House. After unloading all things pink, I parked her in prime position in the carpark, so she could show-off all day. I laid out my pink wares and took the opportunity to look at all of the other stands, before the event started. They were absolutely amazing! I had been placed opposite Barefoot Portraits at the far end of the room, and I have to say that watching the photographer at work was absolutely magical! Mandy managed to engage with each and every child and evoked the biggest beaming smiles I have ever seen. She must be totally exhausted!

Promoting the rally at Old Down Manor

Promoting the rally at Old Down Manor

I spent most of the day asking people who approached my display whether they knew about the Pink Car Rally…. “No”… Needless to say, they do now! Then the pink tide turned, when a couple said “Yes – you were at Bradley Stoke last year”. We were indeed!!! We had a comfort stop there, during ‘The Big One’ – our epic End2End Pink Car Rally. They made my day…. but then it got better…. people were giving me donations, buying calendars, someone mentioned they had some hair to donate, someone else mentioned that they knew a teenager who might like one of our wigs, I met a lovely wig maker and had a big chat with her…… and the pink icing on the cake???? I met the lovely Gemma….. who recently received one of our wigs!!!!! Hello again Gemma 🙂 What a wonderful day!  I was quite sorry to pack my pink things away – I didn’t want to leave! I returned to find Blossom being admired by two beautiful girls, who were having their photos taken next to her. She looked very happy indeed and had had a lovely day too – her friend Candy had been and they had managed to spend some time together.

I have been home long enough to count the money raised today and to my surprise (and delight) it totals £79 – so big thanks to all who contributed 🙂

So…. the Festive Fair at Old Down Manor really was full of surprises….. and not just Christmas ones…..

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We made it! We arrived in glorious sunshine too!

We made it! We arrived in glorious sunshine too!

We arrived at Land’s End on Sunday 19th August 2012, at the end of our epic six-day journey, where we travelled the length of Britain, raising awareness of (and funds for) the Little Princess Trust charity, which gives ‘real hair’ wigs to children who lose their hair, primarily through cancer treatments. We were exhausted, but exhilarated. New friendships had been formed, old friendships rekindled and, best of all, we had raised a total of £16,067.06 which would fund 45 children’s wigs!

That was supposed to be the FINAL rally; the culmination of a 5-year awareness-raising programme. BUT, for so many reasons (some of which I will share with you in a future Blog) there WILL BE a 2013 Pink Car Rally….. so please ‘save the dates’ – 7th & 8th September 2013. We will be travelling to Nottingham and ‘other destinations’ to be confirmed. Please follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/pinkcarrally and on Twitter @pinkcarrally and @saligray to ensure you don’t miss any updates. If you know of anyone with a Pink Car, please mention the rally to them. Thank you.

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We did it!!!

Struggling to hold our banner, in the high wind and heavy rain. Yes, it's mid-August!

Struggling to hold our banner, in the high wind and heavy rain. Yes, it’s mid-August!

Well, we’re nearly at the end of February 2013 and I still haven’t managed to update my Blog! I had such great plans, prior to last year’s epic rally! I had upgraded my Nokia to an iPhone and invested in an iPad, to ensure I could write a daily Blog, updating our followers of our progress. In the event, both failed L or more to the point, I failed! I couldn’t connect to the internet, I locked myself out of Facebook and when I tried to re-connect, I was banned for some ridiculous amount of time, because I was trying to reconnect through equipment I hadn’t connected with before…. I could continue, but suffice to say I had to undergo a steep learning curve, whilst the other delightful Pinkies filled in the gaps for me!

So – huge apologies to everyone for the lack of communication.  Hopefully you all managed to keep abreast of things through Social Media?  Miranda from The Sunny Times http://www.thesunnytimes.co.uk/?s=pink+car+rally was an absolute God-send and made huge efforts to contact us along the way and then report on our progress.  Twitter was awash with sightings, although I don’t think we quite managed to ‘trend’.

The Rally was the most incredible journey – from the moment we left, in heavy rain, gale-force winds and (at the last minute) hail, having discovered that the A9 was closed and having to follow the satnav over the mountainous Highlands, to the moment we arrived in Land’s End, six days later, in glorious sunshine.  There are so many stories to tell – far too many for a Blog – but I have started writing them down and hope to produce them in some form or another, in due course.

I would like to thank everyone who supported the Pink Car Rally and the Special Pink Raffle, for your kindness and your generosity.  Together we raised an incredible £16, 067.06, which will fund 45 children’s wigs.

I will leave you with one story, which could perhaps be better described as a cautionary tale.  Having been diverted off the A9 onto a single-track mountain road with ‘passing places’, I wasn’t too concerned, until my SatNav instructed me to “Turn Right”.  Have you ever had one of those moments when every inch of your body is telling you NOT to do something…. and yet…. I didn’t know the road at all and the SatNav became pretty insistent…. so I obeyed and turned right. Well, the mountain road with ‘passing places’ may have been WITHIN my comfort zone, but I quickly realised that the track I had turned onto, which incidentally had LONG grass growing along the centre of it, was well OUTSIDE my comfort zone, especially as it was no wider than my car, showed no sign of passing places and was heading steeply upwards, into thick fog! However, a glance in my rear-view mirror affirmed that there was a complete convoy of pink vehicles behind me and NO place to turn round. I started to ‘glow’ (well, I am a woman!) when I looked at the unmade road ahead, complete with massive potholes and I wondered just how ‘low’ the suspension of the Pink Porsche was…. and whether the Smart would enjoy climbing the very steep mountain track….. I turned to my 15 year old navigator.

“Lissy” I hissed, “How many miles does the SatNav say we will be on this track for?”

“26”

And with that, the SatNav lost signal.  In fact, all method of communication was lost – there was no mobile phone signal and the fog was so dense that I could really only see the car behind me, and very little in front of me! I knew there was a sheer drop, to my left and there was no precise edge to the track! It was the longest 26 miles I have EVER driven and it delayed us by 2 hours.  I clearly remember arriving for coffee at Dornoch, two hours later than anticipated, and thinking “This is only the beginning of our six-day journey”.

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