Norfolk classic car run back for eighth year

Classic cars at the start of last year's Open Churches Classic Car Run at Norwich Cathedral

Classic cars at the start of last year's Open Churches Classic Car Run at Norwich Cathedral - Credit: Archant

As many as 90 classic cars will weave their way through the beautiful Norfolk countryside this summer as part of the eighth open churches run.

And the final stop of their otherwise mystery tour will see them pulling up in front of St Mary’s Church in Ditchingham.

The annual Norfolk Open Churches Classic Car Run takes place this year on August 1 and will kick off the Norfolk Open Churches Week.

Organisers and classic car owners Richard Mitchell and Maurice Gowen arranged the route this year which will see as many as 90 cars and their passengers embark on a 60-mile tour from Norwich Cathedral.

Mr Gowen, a member of the MG Owners Car Club, said this year the drivers will have the opportunity to see nine churches they may not typically think to visit.

He said: “They have a wonderful day because we normally have lovely weather. We have had tremendous feedback.

“It’s a very sociable activity and we have the opportunity to see such wonderful cars.

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“Norfolk churches have a character all of their own and wherever you go you are bound to see a church tower beckoning across Norfolk’s wide open landscape.

“It is not expected that all entrants will visit all the churches but it’s a great way to see some of most lovely churches and to learn more about them.”

The 75-year-old said the cars range from prewar Rolls-Royces to modern Porsches.

He added a short, spiritual pit-stop service given by the Bishop of Norwich will mark the end of the car run at St Mary’s Church.

Entrants will start their day with a coffee or tea and pastry in The Refectory, before embarking on the leisurely country road tour.

This year, the theme is the Yare and Waveney valleys, but the route will not be known until each entrant is given their route book on arrival at the Cathedral Close.

The first cars away will be waved off by the Bishop of Norwich, The Right Reverend Graham James.

Proceeds will go towards the upkeep and maintenance of Norwich Cathedral.

The entry fee is £18 for a car and passenger which includes refreshments at the start of the journey and a full route book.

More information and entry forms can be downloaded from the Norwich Diocese website by visiting www.dioceseofnorwich.orgnewsevents