2017 Bus & Coach Rally
Saturday 22nd April – Ulster Folk & Transport Museum, Cultra

February 2017

The Annual Bus & Coach Rally, the 45th since inception in 1972, will take place on Saturday 22nd April 2017 at the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum at Cultra, Holywood, Co. Down commencing at 09.30 hours.

The event will include judging of vehicles (optional) and a timed Road Regularity Run around parts of Belfast and North Down (optional). During the Rally a number of heritage vehicles will operate free journeys to Bangor and Holywood/Holywood Exchange to give visitors and enthusiasts the opportunity to sample buses no longer to be seen in normal public passenger service.

The Road Regularity Run will cover approximately 30 miles starting mid-morning with details of the route together with maps being distributed to drivers on their arrival at the event. Entrants participating in this part of the day are strongly advised to bring someone along to assist with navigation as due to very limited staff resources Irish Transport Heritage will be unable to provide assistants. On return to Cultra following the Road Run vehicles will be on display to the public until approximately 17.00 hours. For those who wish they may also participate in providing vehicle(s) to assist in the free demonstration bus service referred to above.

The Rally will include the award of cups/trophies for best presented vehicles and to the winner of the Road Regularity Run, the presentation of which will take place at the conclusion of the Rally. A “Finishers Award” will also be presented at the conclusion of the Rally to all entrants who attend for the whole of the day.

No competitive distinction will be made between professional and non-professional drivers. This reflects present day licensing requirements for drivers to have professional qualifications to drive most types of public service and former public service vehicles. Also in the interests of fair competition an independent judge will be appointed on the day. Their role will be to observe the day’s proceedings and to penalise any entrant who does not follow the rules or acts in an irresponsible or unacceptable manner.

17th April this year marks the 50th Anniversary of Ulsterbus taking over the operation of Ulster Transport Authority’s road passenger services. In recognition of its long service to the Northern Ireland community, a selection of Company/preserved vehicles will be on display in the grounds of the Museum. There will also be a small exhibition of memorabilia including uniforms, ticketing equipment, timetables, publicity material and photographs on display within one of the Museum galleries.

The Rally is only event of its type in Ireland and Irish Transport Heritage strives to make it an interesting and memorable day for the professional and enthusiast alike. Everyone is welcome and attached is an entry form with the hope that you will be able to support the event.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Will Hughes
Howard Cunningham

An entry form for the Rally can be downloaded here.