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My ‘First’ Expo - The Movers and Storers Show 2013 - By Ed Roberts

Dec 17, 2013
Sometimes ordinary men have great responsibility thrust upon them. I think that’s how the saying goes. Whilst quote mangling is my thing, I also enjoy sneaking out of my comfort zones on a regular basis. One such recent occasion was when I attended the Movers and Storers Show 2013 at Silverstone Race Circuit a few weeks ago.
 


If you were there you were probably aware of my stalking around the stalls brandishing a rather large camera.  This was because my brief on behalf of The Mover Magazine was to take as many ‘great’ photos as my memory cards and batteries would allow. So it was a case of ‘do’ or ‘die’ in my mind. The even scarier part was getting to meet enough of you so that I could discover a little bit more about the types of companies, the people that work for them and the reasons why you came to this year’s Movers and Storers Show. This slight hesitation in getting into the swing of things proved to be unfounded when I realised how laid-back, helpful and down-to-earth you all were. 



I’m counting this trade show as my first so far. And I’m happy and relieved to relate that I had a good time documenting the sights and sounds of the show.  The venue at The Wing is a great spot. Exhibitors could easily take a stroll along the promenade that overlooks a section of the racetrack.  Professional racers jostled with hobbyists for track space out on the tarmac and it became a dizzying (yet minor) mission of mine to capture the sports cars hurtling around the bend on camera.

 


Speed was also order of the day for one of the show’s most anticipated events – ‘The Packer of the Year Contest'. Organised by M&G Removals from
Solihull and invigilated by Matt Faizey, the competition was hard won by the Matthew James Removal & Storage Team with just one parcel to spare. The aim of the game was to fit as many parcels into M&G’s smallest fleet vehicle within 22 minutes. The crew with the fewest parcels left was the victor!  The competition gathered in quite a crowd down amongst the show ‘Vehicle Expo’ in the Pit Lane Garages. 

 


Elsewhere, computer game enthusiast Colin of Adm
inister Software set up an interactive F1 cockpit so fellow exhibitors could experience a virtual Silverstone racing experience. There was a draw for a bottle of champagne. Needless to say my skills from the era of 1980s Atari have become unsuitably eroded since. I was 100% rubbish.  This was one of my favourite stalls at the show and I hope this level of combination of interaction, fun and invention returns at the next one. Plans are already afoot for a 2014 show at the same venue.

 


Of the 45 stalls in the main hall and a further 5 plots in the Pit Lane Garages, the removals and storage trades were well represented by a broad cross section of  international moving firms (White & Company / Kidds Services), lock suppliers (Chateau Products), packaging material specialists (BAR / Simpsons / Haywoods), industry specific insurance brokers (Basil Fry & Co / Reason Global /
Pound Gates), online lead generation firms (reallymoving.com), price comparison sites (Buzzmove), lorry and forklift sales  (Bespoke / Toyota / Mac’s / UVB), crate hire (PHS Teacrate / PPS Midlands), container hire (Lion / S Jones), currency exchanges (Currencies Direct) and even a new trade association (The Alliance of Independent Movers – AIM).  

 

Just about everybody I spoke to was extremely open about the benefits the show brought to their firms as far as establishing new contacts and client relationships whilst renewing old friendships. The Silverstone venue was a big hit too, with a lot of the exhibitors expressing how appropriate the choice was being that they loved all things fast and vehicular.  Even after a heavy night of partying and socialising at the on site Boozebox, that included some great food, fabulous entertainment from a guitar duo that almost set their instruments on fire with the energy of their playing, and a show-stopping karaoke from Peter Doman of Basil Fry  – everyone was openly positive about their experiences at the show. Much talk revolved around the presence of a certain celeb.  Yes, the party was so loud The Stig came by to investigate.  Photo opportunities and much misbehaviour ensued making for a memorable end to day one! I think there were even some attendees who were enjoying their hangovers the following morning.

 



As well as networking, exhibitors and attendees were able to attend the Movers and Storers Conference run by The Mover. I was present throughout the conference that complemented the main show and ran throughout the conference upstairs on the mezzanine floor.  To read more, turn to page 26.



 

As my first trade show I found it all to be a very engaging and lively experience, and as good as others in the future may turn out to be, I’ll never forget that ‘first is forever'.

 






Photos:  From the top: Ed Roberts; action on the Silverstone track; visitors in the networking lounge; reallymoving.com; S Jones Containers.  Chateau Products; Currencies Direct; Lion Containers.  Rob Thacker of Pound Gates presents Daniel Pettit with an IPod and Bose docking station; Basil Fry & Company; Reason Global; Simpson Packaging.  Kidd's and Kenneth Hayton Removals trucks; A Haywood & Sons; Toyota Materials Handling and finally, some say he was born in a removals truck, all we know is, he's called The Stig.

 

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