As the 2014 NMBS show approaches our thoughts go back to 2013 when I (Glen Jewell) and my bleary eyed Sales Manager, Simon Barber, returned from the Telford venue. I was asleep in the passenger seat when Simon announces to me that we are being pulled over, on the M42, by two unmarked police cars – one in front and the other tight behind. As we slow down and stop, marked cars pull in front and behind on the hard shoulder and come to a stop – leaving four fully armed police officers, with machine guns, to step out of their cars and approach us.
We sat, nervous, wondering if this was a little excessive for breaching the speed limit by a few miles per hour.
We then stepped out of our car gingerly, to the sound of a police helicopter circling overhead and the dawning realisation that the motorway had been shut. And so fully garbed in Blue Rock outfits we were questioned and searched on the hard shoulder in broad day light.
Apparently, a member of the public had “seen” someone handling a gun in the back of the car. The gun, it would appear, was actually the 6ft TV stand that we had taken to the NMBS exhibition – that I was moving around in the back or the car to find my lunch.
The searches were no more intimate than a pat down, but we were driven under guard to the nearest police station for the car to be unpacked and repacked before being sent on our way.
A few things have been learnt from our experience, and at the 2013 NMBS Exhibition;
- Do not wind up a competitor at the show, as you never know who they might call.
- Never try some funny one liners with an armed police officer.
Roll on Coventry 2014!
If you’re heading to the show this year, come and visit us on stand 232 to see what tricks we have up our sleeve this year…