Thursday 30 July 2009


Staff from a Leeds car retailer braved sun, wind and rain to cycle over the Pennines recently, all in the aid of a West Yorkshire children’s charity.

The team of sixteen from Leeds Volkswagen took two days to travel the 132 miles from Leeds to Liverpool for “Cash for Kids”, raising over £1,000 in the process.

The charity helps thousands of sick, disabled and underprivileged children in West Yorkshire.

Navigating their way along the canal system the team stopped overnight in Burnley for medical attention and rest before completing the journey to Liverpool, finishing at the Albert Dock on the Liverpool waterfront.

Event organiser and Leeds Volkswagen workshop controller, Paul Smith, said: “Everyone was shattered by the time we arrived in Liverpool but delighted to have completed such a mammoth journey for such a good cause.

“It was a great effort by everyone not only due of the elements but because the tow path often disappeared into mud, grass or rubble, sometimes a combination of all three.

“The team spent their own time and money in preparing for this, including costs for accommodation, equipment and travel back.

“Most had never cycled before and had to purchase a bike, helmet, and other equipment in order to carry out the ride.”

It’s not too late to donate money for the charity, simply got to of call in to the retailer on Elland Road opposite Leeds United Football Club.

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email


A west London cricket club has been boosted by the renewal of a sponsorship deal with a local car retailer.

Shepherd’s Bush Colts junior teams will continue to be backed by Citygate Volkswagen on Victoria Road, South Ruislip for another season.

The club, with teams at under 9, 11, 13 and 15 levels, will use the financial injection to improve the clubhouse, changing rooms and pitch, and increase coaching.

Amongst the club’s coaching staff is current Middlesex fast bowler, Alan Richardson.

Imran Khan, the cricket club’s sponsorship officer, said: “Everyone associated with the club is delighted with this significant sponsorship deal and very grateful to Citygate Volkswagen for their continued support.

“Their sponsorship has proved invaluable since 2005 as it’s helped improve facilities and coaching for the youngsters.

“Thanks to Citygate we can encourage more youngsters in the area to take part in cricket, especially with the Ashes taking place at the moment.”

Chris Deefholts, brand manager at Citygate Volkswagen, said: “We had no hesitation in sponsoring the club for a fourth year as it provides the community with a great summer sport.

“Staff from Citygate will also be supporting the team from the sidelines and keeping our fingers crossed for a successful season.”

The Shepherd’s Bush Colts play in the Middlesex Junior League with home games at Bromyard Avenue, East Acton.

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email

Yale Enters the Digital Age

Yale has increased its online presence with the launch of an extensive European-wide web site, the formation of a dedicated online resource for the Middle East, the creation of a brand new blog and entry into the world of Twitter.

Both the European web site and the Middle East resource have been designed to be easy to navigate whilst mirroring the style and attention to detail that goes into creating the company’s class leading materials handling equipment.

Along with product and company information, the site also features an online press office, which includes an opportunity to post industry questions to MD Frank Ulbricht, an RSS feed, aftersales support, used forklift truck information, links to dealers and information on Yale Financial Services.

Translated into seven languages, the site can be found at the following addresses:

- English:
- French:
- German:
- Spanish:
- Italian:
- Dutch:
- Russian:

A second web resource, has also been established as a dedicated web site for Yale in the Middle East.

In addition to the web site, Yale has also launched a new blog with the aim of opening up more communications channels with its customers, dealers and the media.

As well as the latest press releases, will feature comments on industry topics, dealer news and competitions.

Speaking about the company’s digital developments, Richard Czepukojc, Yale Europe’s marketing communications executive, said: “We know that more and more people are using the web for research before making purchasing decisions and increasingly see it as a valuable resource.

“Our new web site is much easier to navigate and features much more information than the previous site.

“We are also very excited about our first blog. We will be featuring many different articles on forkliftsRus and are looking to use it as a two way communication channel. We are inviting people to comment on the articles we post, tell us their views and contribute if they have suitable articles they want us to publish.”

To mark the company’s new digital offering, Yale has also entered the world of Twitter and is inviting interested parties to follow them by searching for the company’s username Yale_Forklifts.

The first blog entries and tweets have already been added to with new posts planned every week.

Connect drives away with Goodyear Dunlop full service agency job

Following a wide-ranging review of all its agency partnerships, Goodyear Dunlop UK has appointed Connect Group as its UK and Ireland full service agency, responsible for its complete brand portfolio.

Connect, based in Wolverhampton, has handled the HiQ retail brand for the past 10 years. During this decade the agency has been responsible for the complete repositioning of the brand and the introduction of a new corporate identity currently being introduced across all 125 UK franchised stores.

Now, the tyre industry leader has decided to put all of its marketing communications within one agency, giving Connect its Goodyear and Dunlop brand portfolio to manage.

Commenting on the appointment Mark Dilks, Goodyear Dunlop’s Group Marketing Manager, said: “Connect has a clear understanding of the markets we operate in and has proven strategic capabilities across its wide portfolio of clients.

“The agency’s comprehensive full service offering will ensure we achieve all of our marketing communications objectives going forward and by bringing all of our marketing services into one agency, we will be able to achieve considerable cost savings and have one principal point of contact.”

Rob Hampton, Connect Group’s MD said: “We have a long and proud association of working with Goodyear Dunlop through our work on the HiQ brand.

“Our mission is to offer our clients a comprehensive business solution combining the expertise within the group, bringing together creative design, digital services and direct marketing. It is this approach that sets our business apart and offers clients such as Goodyear Dunlop the results-driven service they need in this difficult, but recovering climate.”

Connect’s clients include Tarmac, Bentley Motors, Sealine, Calor, Volkswagen UK, Costa, Jim Lawrence, Wrexham & Shropshire Trains, Lee Longlands, Jaguar Land Rover, Uni-ball and The Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.

Released on behalf of Connect Group by Connect PR. Telephone Hazel on 01902 714957 or email for further information.

Wednesday 29 July 2009


Style and excellence are imperative in the hairdressing industry and that’s why top brand ghd turned to leading flooring company, Amtico International, when it came to the flooring for their new international headquarters.

The ghd brand, founded in 2001 has since gone from strength to strength. The glamorous headquarters located in the landmark development of Bridgewater Place in Leeds, occupies approximately 16,000 sq ft over the first two floors of the city’s tallest building.

Amtico International offered a high quality, contemporary fuelled solution for this project with their Black Walnut flooring.

When you walk into ghd’s international headquarters you literally get a chance to ‘strut your stuff’ as the futurist reception area features a “catwalk” walkway. This dramatic atmosphere continues throughout with only the highest possible quality products being used.

Amtico International’s Black Walnut flooring combines accurately reproduced shading and grain with a degree of design flexibility not found in natural woods. It seamlessly compliments its surroundings by adding depth and atmosphere to the environment.

The project was designed by the award winning team at careyjones interiors who transformed the building into a multi-use environment that reflects the style of this unique leading brand. During the design process different flooring options were presented but the designers at careyjones were keen to use Amtico due to ease of installation.

The visually stunning headquarters consists of a ground floor ghd ‘academy’ plus state of the art first floors offices. The ‘academy’ provides a showcase for new product demonstrations and specialist courses for stylists and visitors. The depth of the Amtico flooring tile was considered perfect to use in this area as the design team were confident that Amtico could handle any spills or splashes.

Beth Watson ghd’s Education Director said “Amtico flooring was specified for the ‘academy’ due to the great visual affects it offers. The Black Walnut flooring works well in conjunction with other design elements and we are very pleased with the results.

“The installation of Amtico was quick and easy and the fact that the flooring is backed by a 15 year commercial guarantee gives us confidence in its future performance.”

Amtico has been specified in many hair salons nationwide including Sak’s and Wella. In this design-conscious industry the interior scheme of a salon is an important consideration. Amtico can be relied upon to offer a durable flooring solution which not only looks professional but can meet the demands of busy environments.

Sophia McKain, Amtico’s European marketing manager believes, “The Amtico flooring used throughout the ghd ‘academy’ is durable, looks fantastic, and really adds to the design of the salon.”

Amtico International has 40 years’ experience in designing, engineering and manufacturing some of the most innovative and resilient flooring products in the world. The company delivers flooring solutions to industry and business as well as domestic environments.

To find out more visit,

Issued on behalf of Amtico International by Connect PR

For further information, please contact Lizzie Furnell or Sue Foster on 01902 714957 or email /

Tuesday 28 July 2009


Cheltenham’s Volkswagen retailer has boosted its senior management with the appointment of a new sales manager.

Matt Owens has joined the Tewkesbury Road site bringing with him over 12 years’ experience across a range of high profile manufacturers in the motor industry.

The 35-year-old began his career after in 1996 after leaving university and has progressed through various roles including sales executive and sales manager and general sales manager.

He said: “I’m thrilled to be taking this role and look forward to continuing the high quality of customer service. The site has good people and processes, and my first task will be to spend time getting to know all staff and customers.

“I want to help bring a breath of fresh air to the retailer and provide the service people come to expect from such a prestigious name.”

Phil Smale, brand manager for Cheltenham Volkswagen, said: “Matt has a superb track record in the automotive industry and brings to Cheltenham a vast amount of brand awareness gained through experience across all retail sectors.

“His appointment will only strengthen the brand in the town and provide a bank of knowledge for everyone associated with the site.”

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email


As football supporters across the land continue to twiddle their thumbs during the excruciating close season, the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy has decided to ask fans what other sport is tickling their fancy as a substitute.

The ‘gentleman’s game’ of cricket is widely accepted as the nation’s summer sport, but Johnstone’s want fans to have their say as the meat pies and matchday magic remain a distant memory.

So whether it is cricket, tennis, golf or even darts, supporters are being urged to let the competition know what is tickling their fancy as a sporting substitute to football.

Johnstone’s Paint Trophy brand services manager Tom Newton said: “As passionate football fans ourselves, we are all missing the Beautiful Game, let alone the start of the new Johnstone’s Paint Trophy season.

“As a bit of fun to occupy people’s minds during the close season, we are going to find out what our official summer sport really is.”

One lucky person who enters the poll on the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy’s official website will win an official Johnstone’s Paint Trophy football, signed by goalscoring great and TV pundit Mark Bright.

To enter the trophy’s sporting substitute poll, click on

Once each fan has entered the poll, they are asked to email with their contact details to stand a chance of winning the prize.

Johnstone’s. Bringing colour to the beautiful game.

Issued on behalf of Johnstone’s by Ben Smallman, Connect PR, ( 01902 714957

Notes to editor:

About PPG

Pittsburgh-based PPG is a global supplier of paints, coatings, chemicals, optical products, speciality materials, glass and fibreglass. The company has more than 150 manufacturing facilities and equity affiliates and operates in more than 60 countries. PPG shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange (symbol: PPG). For more information, visit

Monday 27 July 2009

UK Holidaymakers Could Save Fuel Costs This Summer

The number of vehicles on the UK’s roads is set to rise this summer as many holidaymakers opt to stay in the UK instead of venturing abroad. However the price of petrol continues to rise making more people consider switching to LPG.

Chris Taylor, Autogas development executive at LPG supplier Calor, explains: “The strength of the Euro and the favourable weather forecast for August have influenced our decision to stay in the UK, but the credit crunch seems to be the main reason we are choosing to holiday closer to home.

“Whilst a UK break is considered a cheaper option than travelling abroad, the cost of petrol and diesel is already well over £1.00 per litre and set to increase further through the summer. meaning getting to our destination may not be as cheap as we hope. However, Midlands motorists could be saving even more money on their holiday this year by converting to LPG.”

Take, for example, a journey from Birmingham to Brighton. The cost of travelling the 180 mile journey could be up to 37 per cent less expensive in an LPG powered vehicle(1).

In a petrol-fuelled Vauxhall Insignia 2.0l estate, the return journey would cost an average of £46.34 whereas in a similar LPG powered vehicle, the cost of fuel could be as low as £28.66.

More and more people are now realising the benefits of LPG which, in addition to reduced fuel costs, also include lower CO2 and NOx emissions and lower emissions of harmful PM10 particles(2), as well as up to 100% exemption from the London congestion charge and increased residual values.

In 2008, the number of LPG conversions carried out by LPGA Approved Installers rose by 36 per cent from 2007 - the highest number of conversions in five years. The total number of LPG vehicles on the UK’s roads now stands at around 155,000.

Chris adds: “LPG is by far the most widely available alternative fuel available in the UK. Motorists running LPG vehicles can save up to 40 per cent on fuel costs(3) and, in many cases, can recover the cost of a conversion in under two years(4).

“Given the rise in popularity of LPG, the number of refuelling sites is also increasing. There are now more than 1,400 public access sites with the majority of these on petrol forecourts.”

Autogas Limited, a joint venture between Calor and Shell, currently supplies around 220 outlets in the UK. A full list can be found at In addition, Calor supplies autogas from over 150 outlets through its Calor Centres, Morrisons supermarkets and other independent sites. A full list of all sites supplied by Calor can be found at .

- ends -


1 Costs calculated for Vauxhall Insignia 2.0l estate using average combined mpg figures quoted by manufacturer on assuming a reduction of 20% for LPG and fuel prices taken from as of 21 July 2009.

2 LPG vehicles produce 17% less carbon dioxide than petrol and 2% less than diesel, 120 per cent less NOx than petrol and staggering 2,000 per cent less than diesel. In terms of small particle emissions (PM10) one LPG vehicle will emit up to 120 times less than a diesel vehicle. Small particle emissions are related to health effects including increased risk of heart and lung disease and problems such as asthma. All figures taken form the European Emissions Testing Programme 2003

3 Savings are based on official combined consumption figures published on for 2.0 16V Laguna Sport Tourer assuming a 20% reduction for LPG. National average fuel prices taken from and a typical onsite bulk LPG price of 45.6p per litre including duty and VAT (Prices as at 09 April 2009). In order to calculate potential fuel savings, Autogas has made a savings calculator available on its web site:

4 Calculations based on fuel costs taken from 11/05/09, consumption figures taken from for a 2.0 petrol Vauxhall Insignia Estate and assuming a 20% reduction in fuel consumption for LPG. Calculation assumes conversion fee of £1,800 including VAT with an annual mileage of 20,000 miles. Payback period equates to 23.34 months.

The following LPG powered vehicles are available for road testing:

Saab 93 saloon Linear SE 1.8 manual
Saab 93 estate Linear 1.8 manual
Renault Laguna Expression Sport Tourer 2.0 manual
Vauxhall Astra 1.4 sxi estate manual
Vauxhall Astra 1.4 sxi 5 door hatch
Renault Megane Sport 2.0 manual 225 5 door hatch
Vauxhall Insignia 1.8 Exclusive 5 door Hatch
Honda Civic Type R

Debt chasers urged to take correct course in recovery race

Businesses are being urged to take one of three simple actions when recovering debt – or risk ‘throwing good money after bad.’

Leading Midlands law firm Higgs & Sons has outlined a three-pronged approach for companies as the firm reports more and more dispute resolution cases.

Dispute resolution specialist Julia Lowe said that if a business or individual is owed money from a debtor, then the options of pursuing through county court, serving a statutory demand or simply writing it off are most common.

Julia, who has built the largest dispute resolution team in the region, did stress however, that a legal claim was best kept as a last resort.

She said: “Before you commence any formal action you should first consider sending the debtor a letter before action. This is a formal letter setting out details of the debt and demanding that it be repaid within a certain time.

“If the debtor fails to pay up, as creditor you have three options. You could pursue the debt through the County Court, serve a statutory demand or simply just write it off.

“Notwithstanding mediation or some other form of resolution of the dispute, the County Court offers three procedures for settling disputes. The procedure that applies will generally depend upon the amount of money claimed.”

Higgs also remind businesses to consider a statutory demand as formal demand for debt under the Insolvency Act.

Julia added: “If you’ve already obtained judgment against the debtor you may enforce it by serving a statutory demand. You could however use the statutory demand mechanism as a stand alone alternative to court action if the debt is not in dispute and is for at least £750.

“Statutory demands should be taken seriously. Once served it requires the debtor to either pay the amount claimed plus interest; pay an amount which reduces the debt to less than £750; offer to secure it against property; offer to repay the debt in a way that is satisfactory to you or apply to have the statutory demand set aside.”

Whilst a statutory demand is often cheaper and more efficient than going down the county court route, businesses should be aware that a debtor can apply to court to set it aside if there is a substantial dispute over the money owed.

“Whichever route you take to recover a debt you should carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of the available methods.

“If you are unsure of your options or the prospects of success of your claim you should seek specialist legal advice, otherwise you could be throwing good money after bad.”

For more information about Higgs’ dispute resolution department contact Julia Lowe on 01384 342100.


When leading Irish furniture store Dekko came to choose the flooring for their new Antrim store, they turned to Amtico International for a high quality solution.

Dekko, a destination store that caters for all furniture needs was opened in October 2008 and is approximately 12,000 sq ft. The brief required for the flooring throughout the building was to be as sleek, smooth and stylish – the Spacia Collection from Amtico fitted the bill perfectly.

The sub dividing room sets within the Dekko store showcase innovative and inspirational design ideas. With much thought going into the design of each room, different finishes are used to create looks, which are not only stylish now, but will also stand the test of time. With this in mind, the choice of flooring was very important and Dekko were able to specify Amtico’s Spacia collection with confidence that the range would complement the other design elements in store.

Gareth Oakes, marketing manager for Dekko said, “Dekko aim to offer products that are well designed, functional and modern. It was important for us to use flooring which accommodated all our design needs in the Antrim store. Amtico was specified because it delivers a contemporary look that compliments our furniture and fits in well with our ranges.

“We are thrilled with the results of the project. Taking only six weeks to complete there was a quick turn-around and Amtico were very accommodating to our needs. The ease of fitting and the wide range of options available, make Amtico flooring perfect for a commercial setting”.

An array of colours from the range was used for the room sets. Ceramic Chocolate was specified for the walkways and main areas of the store. Ebony Oak teamed with aubergine walls and black gloss desks to create a contemporary styled, trendy office space followed by Walnut chocolate flooring with neutral walls and white gloss created a cosy but stylish living space. The Traditional Oak tile flooring created a conservative but inspiring living/dining space when mixed with greens, browns and a feature wall of wallpaper.

The versatility of the Amtico tiles were key in the decision making for Dekko: “We wanted to create a different look in each room set and Spacia gave us the opportunity to do this. Being able to vary the styles of the tiles was a great help. This meant we were free to re-use several colours in each room without worrying about them looking too similar”, concluded Gareth.

It was crucial that the flooring used was extremely durable so that it could deal with the realities of a retail setting which receives heavy foot traffic, especially on the main walkways in the store. The Amtico Spacia collection comes with a urethane coating as standard making it ideal for use in a commercial environment. This extremely tough layer provides a high level of scratch, scruff and stain resistance.

Amtico has 40 years’ experience in designing, engineering and manufacturing some of the most innovative and resilient flooring products in the world. The company delivers flooring solutions to industry and business as well as domestic environments.

For further information, please contact Sue Fosteror Lizzie Furnell on 01902 714957 or email /


When the Norman Arrow set sail from Dover to Boulogne for the first time in May 2009, she made history. The new high speed catamaran was built to impress, and when it came to the flooring, that meant Amtico Marine.

The 112 metre Incat is the largest ever fast ferry to operate on the cross channel route between England and France. She is also the world's largest diesel-powered catamaran and the first ever freight carrying high speed vessel to operate across the Dover Straits.

Incat’s associate company Revolution Design created the interior of the vessel before she was sold to French ferry operators LD Lines. For the flooring of a number of busy communal areas Revolution chose a range of products from Amtico Marine’s wide and varied collection of high quality products.

The Norman Arrow was to make up to eight crossings a day between Dover and Boulogne, carrying up to 417 vehicles and 1,200 passengers at a time. Ensuring the floor could cope with such heavy foot flow was therefore a must, explains Incat Marketing’s Managing Director, Kim Clifford: “The reason we chose Amtico Marine over other brands was primarily due to its resilience in heavy traffic areas throughout the ship.

“It must not only be able to cope with thousands of people walking over it every day, but we also wanted the flooring to still look good after some time. With Amtico Marine we can be sure of this.”

For the busiest area of the ship, the main walkways, Amtico Marine planking finished in Fused Birch was used to give the area a neutral yet inviting look and mark out a clear route to guide passengers around the ship.

A more creative approach was taken for the café and shop area, using Amtico Marine tiling in Onxy Grey, a dazzling metallic silver colour, to create a striking contrast against some strips of blue marble flooring.

Finally, to reflect the more luxurious nature of the Business Class Lounge, Amtico Marine tiles in rich Vanilla and Mocha were used to give the room a sumptuous and elegant feel.

Incat were equally impressed with the finished look of Amtico Marine on the Norman Arrow as they were on previous projects, having used Amtico Marine on all of their vessels built in recent years.

Kim said: “The comments we have received on the Norman Arrow’s interior have so far been very favorable. Amtico Marine helped us to create the right look and gave us the reassurance we were looking for thanks to the floor’s durable qualities.”

The flooring work was carried out over the 14 months it took to construct the ship, as and when spaces became available. In total Amtico Marine flooring covers over 400 square metres.

Issued on behalf of Amtico International by Connect PR

For further information, please contact Sue Foster or Lee Southen on 01902 714957 or email /

Wednesday 22 July 2009


Swansea’s Volkswagen retailer, Sinclair, is celebrating an exclusive double award after two of its managers received national motor industry honours in recognition for their service to the automotive sector.

Gareth Lloyd from Llanelli was named sales manager of the year award, while Michael Allison from Killay was presented with the service adviser of the year award at the recent Motor Trader Industry Awards 2009 held at the Grosvenor Hotel in London.

Regarded as the biggest award event in the automotive retailing sector, the Motor Trader Industry Awards recognises and rewards excellence and innovation within the motor industry.

Michael has over 20 years of automotive experience, since joining the Gorseinon Road retailer straight from school. He has progressed up the career ladder from apprentice technician through to his current role as service manager.

Having joined the Sinclair team in 2000, Gareth has amassed 22 years of sales experience. His varied sales roles have provided him with a valuable insight into customers’ needs and staff development.

Both managers were required to submit a comprehensive assessment of their attributes and skills supported by evidence from customers.

The winning pair attended an intensive interview by the award judges who evaluated their service standards, procedures and customer satisfaction records.

Speaking of the award Michael said: “We had a fantastic evening and were delighted to win our categories. Competition was tough which made winning the award even better.

“We are very proud to represent the high level of service that Swansea customers have come to expect from the Sinclair team.”

Sinclair brand m
anager, Clive Hopkins who encouraged the pair to enter added: “Both Gareth and Michael are clear examples of how successful management helps to maintain a successful business through this tough trading environment.

“We’re proud at Sinclair to regularly receive high levels of customer satisfaction and this was reflected in the fact we were the only business on the night to win two awards out of the 18 categories.”

For further information on the Volkswagen range on Gorseinon Road call Sinclair Swansea on 01792 894951.

Picture caption: (l-r), Gareth Lloyd and Michael Allison outside Sinclair Volkswagen.

Released on behalf of Sinclair Volkswagen by Connect PR.

For further information call Sue Foster on 01902 7149 57 or email


Barnards Volkswagen is celebrating its 100th birthday with a weekend of family entertainment, a charity fashion show, a classic car parade and everyone is invited.

The Stowmarket Volkswagen retailer is marking 100 years of business this weekend. Its birthday celebrations will be launched on Friday evening with a charity fashion show followed by a family fun day on the Saturday.

The Station Road East retailer will transform its showroom on Friday for an evening of fashion and beauty with proceeds from the event going to Macmillan Cancer Support.

Local fashion outlets, Wardrobe and WNUK Clothing Company will showcase their next season collections supported by Tydeman Jewellers. In addition to the catwalk show guests can enjoy on-site massages, mini manicures and win a spa break in return for a charitable donation.

The evening event, beginning at 7pm, will also display a collection of gifts, accessories and paintings from local businesses and artists. Each exhibitor will donate a percentage of their sales to Macmillan Cancer Support.

The special weekend event is aimed at all ages as the Volkswagen retailer wants to create a party atmosphere to thank Stowmarket customers as well as past and present employees for all their support over the years.

Brand manager Gary Halestrap said. “This event is one big thank you to everyone that has supported us over the years and we hope that many people will take advantage of the activities we have planned.”

Saturday’s family fun day will begin at 10am as a procession of classic Volkswagens will take to the streets in a lap of honour to pay homage to the legendary models. The parade supported by DubGeneration Volkswagen Club will later display the vehicles at the retailer for customers to admire.

Children’s entertainment will be provided by a magician and face painters and the Funky Dub Bar, a modified iconic 1979 Volkswagen camper van, which serves drinks and lively music. Further refreshments will be provided by an all day hog roast.

“We are transforming our showroom for the weekend’s activities but will also be offering some very special 100 year offers on new and used Volkswagens for customers who would like a grab a deal,” concluded Gary.

For further information on the Volkswagen range call 01449 612121.

Picture caption l-r, Craig Pendergast, technician, Hannah Boyce, marketing and sales administrator and Craig Daniels, sales executive get ready for the birthday celebrations.

For further information call Sue Foster on 01902 714957 or email

Monday 20 July 2009


Imperial Commercials of Halesowen has revealed its new slogan thanks to imaginative kids at a local primary school.

Re-launched under the Ford brand name, the light commercial vehicle specialists will use the catchphrase ‘Looking Fordward’ as devised by pupils of St. James’s C of E Primary School in Stourbridge.

The competition was opened up to primary schools across the region with £500 awarded to the winning school.

Imperial Commercials of Halesowen opened up its doors to van operators across the region earlier this month having previously been hit by the collapse of the Birmingham van maker LDV.

John Asbury, franchise manager at Imperial Commercials Halesowen, said: “Our new slogan fits perfectly alongside our focused and professional approach, which makes us the first choice for commercial vehicle operators in the West Midlands.”

Based on Park Road, Imperial Commercials of Halesowen boasts two of the leading brands in the commercial vehicle sector. With a comprehensive range of Ford and DAF vehicles available, Imperial Commercial’s promises on price, products, delivery and aftersales support has underlined their professional service provision for nearly 50 years

To find out more about Imperial Commercials Halesowen call 01384 424 500


News release issued by Connect PR.

For further information, please contact Lee Southen on 01902 714957 or email


Connect PR will be looking to generate some colourful headlines after successfully pitching to work alongside one of Britain’s biggest art brands.

Reeves, famous for its Painting By Numbers kits and vast range of art products, will work alongside Connect to deliver sustained PR campaigns over the next 12 months and to promote the company’s popular accessories and sets.

Established in 1766, Reeves has a proud history of manufacturing excellent quality fine art products. In a continuing quest for product improvement, the art specialists combine the most recent technological advances with 200 years of manufacturing experience.

Reeves, with head offices in Kidderminster, has already agreed to a number of PR projects with Connect, who are developing a strong portfolio in the sector having recently secured another new business client with uni-ball.

Alex Gremin, marketing controller at Reeves said: “This is an important time for Reeves as we are launching a number of exciting new product lines into the market and looking to confirm our high standing within the market place.

“In our discussions with Connect we felt that they had a real grasp of what makes our products so unique and their experience sat extremely well with our market ambitions. This is an exciting time for us and we are looking forward to working in partnership with Connect in driving the brand forward.”

Connect Communications is part of the Connect Group based in Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire.

Managing Director, Hazel Crawford –Upton states: “Reeves is a brand within one of the world’s largest art companies.

“The name is synonymous with quality, respected art and craft items and accessories and we are delighted to be working with them.

“Everyone here at Connect is looking forward to the challenge of delivering a long-term communications strategy and the early signs are already extremely promising.

The Connect Group, which also includes Connect Advertising and Connect Direct, employs more than130 staff across the organisation. Amongst the agency’s other clients are Volkswagen, Lee Longlands, Amtico International, Baxi, Goodyear and Calor. To find out more about Reeves Art click on


Issued on behalf of Reeves Art by Connect PR

For further information, please contact: Ben Smallman, Lee Southen or Hazel Crawford-Upton on 01902 714957 or email / /


Young British students are being encouraged to keep their loved ones firmly in mind, thanks to a heart warming initiative by pen manufacturer uni-ball.

The company is celebrating the arrival of its new high-tech uni-ball Vision RT pen by giving young travellers one to take with them to send regular postcards back home.

Stuart Barker, marketing manager at uni-ball said: “We wanted to target aspiring young students and professionals with the Vision RT, because in an unpredictable world, it is a pen they can rely on.

“We want to resurrect the art of handwriting. People really appreciate a handwritten note, letter or postcard so much more than any form of electronic communication. Young travellers will surely give their parents a lift by putting pen to paper.”

Ideal for students about to embark on a gap year, Vision RT delivers a smart, dependable and smooth writing instrument that will not leak whilst airborne thanks to its airplane-safe technology.

The pen also features uni Super ink – a unique pigment ink with outstanding levels of protection - meaning their handwritten notes will be secured as they put pen to postcard.

Students can apply for their free Vision RT pack of Postcards with Vision by emailing There are a limited number of packs up for grabs, which will be issued on a first come, first served basis.

To find out more about Mitsubishi Pencil Co. visit


Issued on behalf of Mitsubishi Pencil Co. by Connect PR

For further information, please contact: Lee Southen on 01902 714957 or email

Thursday 16 July 2009


A pen with spooky qualities that glows in the dark has been named the winner of a futuristic pen competition.

William Townsend’s special design scooped top prize in the competition’s under 6 age category and wins a family trip to Cadbury World, a Back to School bumper stationery pack and a certificate to proudly display on his bedroom wall.

The competition was organised by Mitsubishi Pencil Co., owners of the uni-ball brand, to celebrate its global 30th anniversary and to highlight the importance of good literacy skills.

A pupil at St. Benedict Biscop Primary School in Wombourne, William joined hundreds of other children from across the Midlands to ink their pen designs for the future. Other designs ranged from a dragon pen that scorches the paper as you write and a self destructing writer instrument that comes complete with a radio, MP3 player and memory stick.

Marketing Manager at Mitsubishi Pencil Co., Stuart Barker said: “Congratulations to William on winning the competition with this design. His entry clearly celebrated the art of handwriting by designing a pen that he would like to use in 30 years time.

“William’s handwriting also demonstrated exceptional clarity as we asked all pupils to describe, in no more than 100 words, their pen’s key features and benefits.”

To find out more about Mitsubishi Pencil Co. and their range of essential Back to School products visit


Issued on behalf of Mitsubishi Pencil Co. by Connect PR

For further information, please contact: Lee Southen on 01902 714957 or email


Children from an Amersham school were knocked for six when a star of the current Australian ‘Ashes’ team dropped in for a training session.

Michael Clarke, was guest of honour at Dr Challoner’s Grammar School for a fundraising event, hosted by Little Chalfont Volkswagen retailer, Citygate.

The Australian vice-captain who scored 83 in the first test of the current Ashes series at Cardiff, spent over an hour in a training session with 30 students before presenting 12-year-old Ollie Penton with a ‘Centurion’s Certificate’.
The award was in recognition of Ollie’s first century for the school earlier this season, one of a remarkable four in total. Awards were also presented to Tom Crick and Sam Bracey in recognition of outstanding performances over the season.

The 28-year-old then hosted a Q & A session with England One Day International, Samit Patel, in front of over 180 children, staff and parents.

The evening concluded with a raffle to win a Volkswagen Golf GTi courtesy of Citygate for the weekend and an auction for a signed Michael Clarke shirt worn at the first test in Cardiff.

A total of over £1,400 was raised which will go towards supporting the provision of cricket at the school.

Dr Challoner’s School’s headmaster, Dr Mark Fenton, said: “The evening was a great success and the boys thoroughly enjoyed the training session with Michael.

“We can’t thank Citygate Volkswagen enough for helping organise the evening, without who the appearance of Michael Clarke wouldn’t have been possible.

“The boys certainly picked up some tips of playing and touring, which some will take with them to the summer tour of Grenada in the West Indies.”

Clarke said: “As an Australian in England during the Ashes series it was great to be met with so many smiling faces.

“I really enjoyed the evening and could see some of the students becoming potential players for England in future Ashes series.”

Citygate Volkswagen’s brand manager, Peter Wood, concluded: “Citygate in Little Chalfont has a special relationship with Dr Challoner’s School and we’re delighted to have made so much money for the school during the evening.”

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email

Wednesday 15 July 2009


A Southend cricket club has been boosted by a new three-year sponsorship deal with a local car retailer.

Ekco Monarchs and Trojans Cricket Club will now be backed by Inchcape Volkswagen in Southend until 2012.

The club will use the funds to buy a new kit, refurbish the clubhouse and changing rooms, and maintain the playing pitches.

Chris Hunt, the cricket club’s vice-chairman, said: “Everyone associated with the club is delighted with this significant sponsorship deal and very grateful to Inchcape Volkswagen for their support.

“The money will help improve facilities for all teams including the youth set-up at under 11, 13 and 15 levels.

“Thanks to Inchcape we can encourage more youngsters in the area to take part in cricket, especially with the Ashes taking place at the moment.”

Simon Kempton, brand manager at Inchcape Volkswagen, said: “We had no hesitation in sponsoring the club for three years as it provides the community with a great summer sport.

“Staff from Inchcape will also be supporting the team from the sidelines and keeping our fingers crossed for a successful season.”

Ekco Monarchs and Trojans Cricket Club play in the mid-Essex league with home games at Thornford Gardens and Shoebury Garrison.

The club’s next home game is against Ingastone as it battles to regain the Premiership title it won in 2005.

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email


With the promise of a hot and sunny summer, Gloucestershire motorists are being urged to check their vehicles are in the best condition for the holiday season.

To make life easier, Cheltenham Volkswagen is offering a free 34–point health check for all cars.

Vehicles will be examined in all vital areas including brakes, steering, tyre condition and lights along with fluid levels such as water, oil, brake, coolant and battery.

Cheltenham Volkswagen’s brand manager, Phil Smale, said: “As a business it’s vital we address customer worries with practical and affordable solutions.

“The health check gives the retailer a chance to help drivers make the most of their motoring, particularly this summer, in the safest and most cost effective way.”

The check can be booked directly with the Tewkesbury Road service department and takes about an hour to complete.

In conjunction with the health check, Cheltenham Volkswagen will price match any like-for-like service, maintenance or repair quotation on their range of vehicles, from any independent garage within a five-mile radius.

All customers need to do is provide a like-for-like quotation for the job, which has to use Volkswagen Original Parts®, in writing to Cheltenham Volkswagen.

Phil added: “Running a car doesn’t have to be expensive but it’s up to us as retailers to help motorists stretch their budgets in every way we can.”

For further information on the free health check or to challenge the price match promise contact retailer on 01242 222 233‎.

If you are interested in this story please contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email


This weekend’s annual Aberdare Park Road Race event is aiming to raise over £6,000 for Park Lane Special School, in conjunction with Aberdare Motorcycle Club.

The 30th anniversary of Wales’ only national road race is expected to attract thousands of spectators over both days.

A total of 44 races will be run on the 0.9 mile circuit with categories including 50cc, 125cc, 400cc, 600cc and classics.

The course car, which ensures all races, riders and spectators are safe at all times is provided by Capitol Volkswagen.

A host of trade stalls, a fun fair and refreshments will be available during the weekend.

Organiser, Aled Lloyd, said: “As it’s the 30th anniversary of the Aberdare Road Races, we’re aiming to entertain the thousands of people and also help the Park Lane Special School in raising vital funds.

“The school provides a vital service to our community and we’re delighted to be able to help out.

“We’re very grateful to all our sponsors, including Capitol Volkswagen for the essential course car.”

The event takes place from 9am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday, with entry free for children under 15 with a playing adult; this is limited to two children per group.

Tuesday 14 July 2009


As part of its title sponsorship of the 2009 FLTA safety conference, LPG supplier Calor will deliver a keynote presentation on safety considerations when using LPG.

Calor’s training coordinator Phil Anderson will provide delegates with information on the safe storage of LPG, whether it be cylinder supply, bulk tanks or fixed fuel tanks; how to identify and minimize hazards; the importance of safe refueling and the importance of keeping up to date with health and safety matters.

Phil says: ”Health and safety is one of the most important areas of materials handling and managers have a duty to ensure that their operators are fully trained.

“Whilst LPG can provide a safe, efficient and reliable fuel to power forklift trucks, it is important to be aware of potential hazards and this conference is an ideal platform to remind operators of the importance of good practice when operating and refuelling forklifts”.

As the UK's leading supplier of LPG, Calor is well established in the industry, with all the major manufacturers offering LPG powered vehicles in their product ranges.

Bulk marketing manager, Laura Luty, says health and safety is top of the agenda at Calor, which it why the company has committed to supporting this year’s conference.

She says: “Customers choosing Calor can rest assured that Health and Safety is of utmost importance to us. We are committed to ensuring both new and existing customers are trained to the highest possible levels and aim to work in partnership with them to ensure safe refuelling procedures are followed every time.”

Calor offers two forklift truck training courses for its customers operating LPG powered vehicles: Safe Refuelling Instruction for operatives and Train the Trainer for instructors. Both courses aim to instruct forklift truck operators how to refuel equipment correctly and safely when using Calor LPG.

For more information on Calor and its training packages, log on to, email or call 0800 216 659.

Midlands business wins prestigious Cranfield School of Management contract

A Wombourne direct marketing specialist is celebrating after completing a contract for the prestigious Cranfield School of Management.

Trapeze Mailing Services created the new campaign using dynamic content which allows a business to target many people but in a very individual, personalised way. In this case, mailers were sent to past participants of Cranfield management programmes with details of future courses that are directly relevant to that individual. Each mailer was personalised to the specific person and even the picture on the front was changed depending on whether the recipient was male or female.

Nikki Price, Trapeze’s business development director explains: “Our objective is to provide a return on investment for our clients. We believe that direct mail is about being smart and getting the right message to the right person. Dear Mr Jones just isn’t enough today and not everybody wants to purchase the same product. Our job is to make customers feel valued through our direct mail campaigns.”

Leanne Neumann, Cranfield School of Management said: “Trapeze has revolutionised the way we communicate. This first campaign has already proved a huge success and we are now looking at further projects in the future.”

Trapeze used their unique XMPie technology to create the campaign for Cranfield. Trapeze is only one of a small number of direct mail specialists with this technology and leads the way for the Midlands region.

Further information: Hazel Crawford-Upton, Connect PR. Tel: 01902 714957. Email:

Monday 13 July 2009


Football fans across Britain are being invited to help create a ‘young and hungry’ fan base for the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy, after the competition launched an appeal to find little dribbling stars of the future.

The trophy, which enjoyed its best ever attendance figures for the 2008/09 season, is now looking for happy new football faces courtesy of an alive-and-kicking baby competition.

Johnstone’s is asking all fans to send pictures of their little ones - clad in team colours – for the chance of their “young star” to feature on its new official website, where they will be displayed in a special Trophy Tots gallery section ahead of the new season.

The first 50 entries will receive a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy mini-football and a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy panel will then pick a shortlist of six in August, which supporters will be able to vote for on the website.

The competition has been created in an attempt to find some of the nation’s cutest and youngest football fans, in a light hearted effort to engage with Football League clubs up and down the country.

It will also coincide with the launch of the trophy’s radical new website, which has been redesigned to engage with more football fans than ever.

Johnstone’s Paint Trophy sponsorship manager Sally Binns said: “We have created a Trophy Tot competition in an attempt to find some budding new fans of the future.

“We’re always keen to interact with supporters of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and we thought this would be another fun and colourful way of doing so.”

The Trophy Tots initiative will be split into three age categories; 0 - 12 months; 12 months to 2 years and 2 years to 4 years.

All fans have to do is email a picture and age of their little son or daughter, complete in club scarf, hat, shirt or any other memorabilia, to by Sunday August 30.

Selected entries will be displayed on in three age categories once the new website launches in early August, each age range will then be shortlisted for fans to vote for the winner.


Johnstone’s. Bringing colour to the beautiful game.

Issued on behalf of Johnstone’s by Sarah Allen, Connect PR, ( 01902 714957


The Pulman Golf Day at Chester Le Street Golf Club in Durham has raised more than £10,000 for a children’s charity and a local hospital.

The charity event, organised by Pulman Volkswagen in Durham, saw 80 golfers tee off to raise money for Newcastle’s Freeman Hospital and the NSPCC.

Sponsors, including Adidas, who supplied the golf balls and shirts, Stone Technical Services and Whitfield Building Services, all contributed to the fundraising success.

Signed sporting memorabilia attracted high bids during the evening auction which included a Kevin Pietersen bat, Shay Given shirt and Sir Garfield Sobers bat.

Pulman Volkswagen brand manager Michael Lines was delighted with the success of the event.

Michael said: “We would like to thank all the golfers and sponsors for making this year’s event such a phenomenal success.

“It was a great day enjoyed by everyone involved and it has set a tough precedent for next year’s event.”

The winning player from team Eos, David Towler from Hadston, Northumberland who works for Mount Grace Insurance, was awarded a trophy, a Callaway golf bag plus a VIP Newcastle United match experience in the director’s box at St. James’ Park.

For further information contact Sue Foster at Connect PR on 01902 714957 or email

Picture caption: Winning player, David Towler (centre) received his trophy from Michael Lines, brand manager Pulman Durham (left) and Simon Sumner, brand manager Pulman Sunderland.

The Freemans Hospital provides pioneering expertise in transplant surgery for adults and children as well as delivering a wide range of advanced, patient-focused healthcare to patients from Newcastle, the North East and beyond.

The NSPCC children’s charity aims to wipe out child abuse by protecting children from cruelty, support vulnerable families, campaign for changes to the law and raise awareness about abuse.

Friday 10 July 2009


A Chiswick-based sales manager is relying on pedal power to take him to the beach in the annual London to Brighton bike ride.

Brett Wiggins has the backing of his employer, Chiswick Volkswagen, and is hoping to raise about £1,000 for the British Heart Foundation.

The 29-year-old has only recently taking up cycling, after injuries brought a premature end to his athletics career, but regularly clocks up over 100 miles in the saddle every week.

He said: “I’ve been training hard and have set myself high standards and a time to reach Brighton in.

“I’m really enjoying cycling and can’t wait to test myself in the ‘London Marathon’ for cyclists.”

Brett is part of a quartet of riders who’ll be among 27,000 people starting the 54-mile journey at Clapham Common on 21st June at 8am.

He’s hoping to reach Brighton in less than four hours in what is his first officially timed bike event.

Chiswick Volkswagen’s brand manager, Shaun Kirby, said: “Brett is very enthusiastic about cycling and he has the support of everyone at Chiswick Volkswagen.

“We’ve organised a collection at the retailer and hope customers can also help increase the total money raised.”

To help Brett reach his target of £1,000 simply call in to Chiswick Volkswagen on King Street, Hammersmith or go to

Released on behalf of Chiswick Volkswagen by Connect PR. For more information contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or


A Macclesfield woman is marking her 30th birthday by soaring like a bird, all in the name of charity.

Cath Harland, who works at Gilbert Lawton Volkswagen, is raising money for local children’s charity JJ’s Sensory Play Centre and will leap out of plane at 12,000ft, before parachuting back to earth.

The jump takes place next month and Cath is aiming at raising at least £500 for JJ’s, taking them nearer to the 2009 fundraising goal of £13,000 needed to install a hydrotherapy pool at the centre.

She said: “I’m nervous and excited about the jump because I’ve never done anything like this before.

“But it’s for a great local charity and I’m determined to reach my target, in terms of money raised and the landing spot!”

JJ’s, which relies entirely on donations, is a soft padded multi-sensory facility that provides relaxation and stimulation for children and adults with special needs.

The jump is another part of the continuing link-up with Macclesfield’s Volkswagen retailer, Gilbert Lawton, which has raised over £10,000 so far.

Joanne Griffiths, co-founder of JJ’s, said: “We are delighted at the many ways Gilbert Lawton and its staff are helping raise money for JJ’s.

“Without support like this JJ’s wouldn’t be able to develop the facility which helps to improve the lives of over 250 children and adults who attend the centre each week.”

Gilbert Lawton Macclesfield’s brand manager, Nick Ashton, said: ““JJ’s provides a fantastic service to the community and we’re delighted to have started in a positive way to raising funds to provide the spa.”

To sponsor Cath go to Gilbert Lawton Volkswagen on Lyme Green Business Park, call 01625 652 700 or log on to

Issued on behalf of Gilbert Lawton Volkswagen by Connect PR. For more information contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or email


The Kent Golf Day charity event at the Marriott Tudor Park Golf Club in Maidstone has raised more than £24,000 thousand pounds for the fund founded in memory of ex-England football captain Bobby Moore.

The two-day event, sponsored by Maidstone’s Volkswagen retailer Beadles, saw 160 people tee off to raise money for the Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research UK.

Among the prizes available to golfers who shot a hole-in-one were a brand new Volkswagen Golf, a set of new golf clubs, a holiday in Portugal and a weekend break at a Marriott hotel.

Beadles brand manager Keith Dowle and founder of the Kent Golf Day, Andrew Burcher, were delighted with the success of this event.

Andrew said: “Thanks to Beadles the inaugural event in 2008 was a phenomenal success.

“One year later we have been inundated with participants and had to extend the event to two days. We could not have done it without Keith and his team supporting us.”

Keith added: “Unfortunately no one managed to get a hole-in-one on the17th hole to drive away in a new car, but the day was a great success and enjoyed by everyone involved.

“It was a testament to the people of Maidstone that so many golfers wanted to take part and raise money for such a good cause. We are extremely happy to have supported the event and look forward to sponsoring similar fundraisers.”

The winning team was the Red Lions, made up of players from the Red Lion pub in Sevenoaks, with All Torque coming a close second.

The Bobby Moore Fund was set up by the late England hero’s widow Stephanie Moore MBE in conjunction with Cancer Research UK. It was established in 1993 to raise money for research into bowel cancer after Sir Bobby died of the disease earlier that year aged just 51.

The proceeds of the golf day will go towards funding pioneering work into the prevention and treatment of bowel cancer as well as raising public awareness of the causes and symptoms.

Mrs Moore said: “Bobby was never happier than when he was playing on a fine course in good company. A massive thank you to Beadles and everyone for supporting the Bobby Moore Fund and making our work possible.”

Issued on behalf on Beadles Maidstone by Connect PR. For more information contact Natasha Brown/Richard Knowles on 01902 714957 or


A new management team at a Romford car retailer has made an instant impact, after early 2009 customer satisfaction figures were published.

Inchcape Volkswagen appointed new sales, service and business centre managers in 2008 marking a new era for the A12 Colchester Road site.

In a successful start to the year, the showroom received praise for its improved customer service, which was monitored through mystery shopper reports and customer satisfaction surveys.

Brand manager Richard Taylor is pleased with the positive news.

He said: “I’m delighted with the customer satisfaction figures as our main focus at Inchcape is to deliver complete satisfaction for our customers.”

With over 30 years’ experience with Volkswagen, new service manager, Jim Wood brings much valued experience to Inchcape.

Jim, from Maidstone, has moved from Inchcape Volkswagen in Colchester to take control of the 20-bay aftersales site in Harold Hill.

His appointment was followed by the promotion of Stephen Greenslade and Hamish White to new car and used car sales managers, respectively.

The duo have worked at Inchcape Romford for seven years between them and in the industry for over 34 years.

A hat-trick of promotions was completed when Phil Kittler moved up to business manager in December 2008, after over twelve years as a sales executive at the Romford site.

Richard continued: “Jim has brought stability and a wealth of experience to the service department, while Stephen, Hamish and Phil complete a very strong sales area for the business.

“The team at Romford is now of a very high standard and we hope this is will be reflected in the satisfaction figures throughout 2009 and beyond.

“This Inchcape Volkswagen retail centre has enormous potential and I’m pleased the initial hard work has paid off.”

Released on behalf of Inchcape Volkswagen Romford by Connect PR. For more information contact Richard Knowles on 01902 714 957 or


A team of charity runners from Isaac Agnew Volkswagen completed the Belfast City marathon, for the first time, raising over £450 for a children’s charity.

The Isaac Agnew relay team, who completed the race in just over four hours, raised money for Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice.

All but one of the five strong relay team were complete novices but decided to take on the worthy challenge encouraged by their work colleagues from the Boucher Road Volkswagen retailer.

Each member of the team ran a range of distances from 3.5 miles to 7.2 miles, finishing 905th out of 2009 relay teams that entered.

Team leader, Desi O’Neill was delighted with everyone’s efforts. He said: “Everyone did so well, especially considering the weather. It was a tough challenge for the beginner runners but we were all delighted to have raised funds for the Children’s Hospice, their work is invaluable.

“Isaac Agnew kindly supported the team by providing our kit and paying our entry fee. The buzz from this year’s race has encouraged more colleagues to support next year’s event."

Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice fundraiser Caroline Greer said: “It was a tough race in poor weather conditions so we are very grateful to the Isaac Agnew team for all their fundraising efforts.”

Brain Robinson brand manager at Isaac Agnew said: “We were very happy to support our staff team and expect this will become an annual charity event for Isaac Agnew.”

The Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice provides respite services, support services and end of life care for children and families across Northern Ireland. Horizon House, the children’s hospice in Newtownabbey, offers a home from home environment for children and their families to feel safe and supported during these difficult times.

Picture caption: (l-r) Members of the Isaac Agnew team hand over their fundraising efforts. Lisa Hancock, service advisor, Gordon Canning, parts advisor, Desi O’Neill, site supervisor, Caroline Greer Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice fundraiser and Neil McEllone, service advisor.

For further information contact Sue Foster at Connect PR on 01902 714957 or email


Kings Lynn Volkswagen is opening its doors and welcoming Skoda and Seat customers for all their servicing and MOT needs.

Motorists previously had to travel to Peterborough or Norwich for their closest main dealer. The introduction of Skoda and Seat servicing specialists at the Bergen Way Volkswagen site will help simplify the needs for local motorists.

All technicians at the retailer are trained at the Volkswagen training academy – one of the leading centres of excellence in automotive training. The technicians follow a structured training and development programme ensuring the highest level of expertise, which is echoed across the other Volkswagen Group brands, including Skoda and Seat.

The North Lynn Industrial Estate Volkswagen retailer made the decision to utilise its highly trained servicing team due to there been no Skoda or Seat dealership in the immediate Kings Lynn area.

Martin Bennett, Kings Lynn Volkswagen brand manager said: “We have opened our workshop for these vehicles to save customers the inconvenience of having to travel to Peterborough and Norwich.

“All Volkswagen brands undergo the same base platform training and therefore deliver the same standard of expertise. Skoda and Seat customers who are not able to travel can rest reassured that they can receive the same level of service from the Kings Lynn team.”

Martin’s service team consists of nine technicians which include two master technicians and one licensed technician. The latter specialists have undergone advance technical training in the very latest diagnostic and electrical systems.

The service department is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm plus available for servicing until 4.30pm on Saturdays.

To book a service or MOT contact Kings Lynn Volkswagen on 01553 778800.

For further information contact Sue Foster at Connect PR on 01902 714957 or email


A sales team from Stowmarket has been given an exclusive award after achieving record levels of customer satisfaction.

The team from Barnards Volkswagen on Station Road East was presented with the regional 2008 Sales Management Excellence award following its continual positive feedback from customers.

Throughout 2008, the Barnards’ team, led by Alan Smythe, consistently provided a personal, friendly and knowledgeable service for customers. An accumulation of mystery shopper scores and customer satisfaction reports helped secure the award.

Alan said: “I’m thrilled we have been given this award, which couldn’t have been done without the hard work from all members of the sales team.

“Our team’s ethic is to make sure every customer is given the correct information to enable them to make an informed purchase.”

Gary Halestrap, brand manager at Barnards, said: “The team thoroughly deserves this acknowledgment as they have strived to deliver total customer satisfaction.

“Their positive attitude has inspired everyone at Barnards and this is demonstrated with this award.”

Barnards Volkswagen will now be looking to continue their success in 2009.

For further information contact Sue Foster at Connect PR on 01902 714957 or email