FROM STONEHAVEN TO STRATFORD

FROM STONEHAVEN TO STRATFORD - CAR FAN TRAVELLING A WHOPPING 442 MILES FOR MOTOR FESTIVAL

Some serious miles are being racked up by visitors to this year’s Stratford Festival of Motoring - but none more than Roger Key who will be driving an impressive 442 miles to take part in the event.

Mr Key and wife Margaret are travelling from Stonehaven in Scotland all the way to Stratford for the festival, which returns to the town on Sunday, April 30th and Monday, May 1st.

That’s the distance of at least two Grands Prix or 52 laps of the Circuit de la Sarthe, the famous venue of the Le Mans 24-hour race.

Of the hundreds of participants bringing their petrol pride and joys to the festival, Mr Key is travelling the furthest in his MG TF. His journey is nearly 200 miles further than last year’s ‘furthest travelled’ attendee Peter Darby, who drove 260 miles from Dumfries.

But for Mr Key, who has travelled to Mull and Shetland, Brittany and even Denmark in pursuit of his hobby, it’s by no means the furthest he’s gone.

The motor enthusiast and his wife, who is a fan of the bard’s home town, have visited the area in previous years and decided to coincide this year’s return trip with their first visit to the motor festival.

“It looks a super event and it’s in a lovely part of the world,” said Mr Key, who is secretary of the Aberdeen MG Owners Club. “We’re looking forward to taking part in one of the runs and having a look around all the other cars.”

The Keys will be leaving their classic 1978 and 1969 MG Midgets, which are being refurbished, at home and are instead travelling the length of the country in their more modern MG TF.

“It’s nothing exceptional but it’s cheap to run and good on fuel and it’s been reliable - we’ve covered a fair few miles in it,” added Mr Key.

The Stratforward-organised Festival of Motoring is one of the highlights of the calendar in Stratford, attracting 60,000 visitors last year.

The 2017 event will follow the same successful formula as the past four years with organised runs into surrounding countryside followed by the spectacular sight of 300 cars parked up on the town centre streets on both days of the festival.

This year’s event is sponsored by Listers, which will showcase its own state-of-the-art range, and the 2017 Featured Marque is the Jaguar, with Wood Street filled with cars from the iconic British brand.

The festival will also feature Audrey, the last remaining vintage mobile cinema, sponsored by local classic car hire company The Open Road and an array of petrolheads’ dream cars on show by Auto Adrenalin.

The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is running a ‘Where’s Will?’ competition, giving people the chance to win a year’s pass if they spot a waxwork model of William Shakespeare among the car displays, and families will be able to take part in The Great Stratford Motor Festival Treasure Hunt, organised by Magic Alley, using a special 'key' to unlock clues across town.

Ruth Wood, events manager at Stratforward, said: “We’re putting the final touches on the organisation of what has shaped up to be a great event, with something on offer for everyone, and we’re delighted to see people coming from far and wide - especially Mr Key and his wife.”