After the hiatus in 2020 caused by global events, the Northern Group of Motoring Writers has again held its pre-event “barbecue” ahead of the SMMT Test Day North at Wetherby.
The event is essentially a chance for journalists and PR representatives to have a nice, relaxed — and well-fed — mingle the night before the serious business of the Test Day.
With most press offices located in the south of the country, the trip up to West Yorkshire the day before can be something of a chore. Most will be on the road for four hours, spending the night in one of several nearby hotels.
The barbecue — or, more accurately, a barbecue food buffet in one of the Wood Hall Hotel‘s function rooms — helps to take the edge off that trek, and make the event more keenly anticipated when September rolls round.
This year’s event saw around 50 attendees, with 22 members of the Northern Group itself — including new members Annabelle and Ben Quirk — along with some of our friends from further afield also staying nearby overnight, and press offices including Kia, Toyota, and Volvo.
Given the successes of the first two events, the NGMW intends that it will become an annual affair too, taking place ahead of the Test Day North each year.
Of course the SMMT Test Day North this year will follow on tomorrow, September 21, once again at its regular Wetherby Racecourse venue following the forced pause last year.
In addition to the general driving activites, NGMW will announce our 2021 Car of the Year from a shortlist of six category winners:
- EV: Ford Mustang Mach-E
- Family: Skoda Octavia
- Fun: Toyota GR Yaris
- Luxury: Rolls-Royce Ghost
- Small: Hyundai i20
- SUV: Cupra Formentor
Should the winning manufacturer be attending the event, there’ll be a trophy presentation too.