#AmazingAccrington Soapbox Challenge earns national recognition

By Scott Dawson Advertising

23 Aug 2023

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In the build-up to the Bank Holiday weekend, the #AmazingAccrington Soapbox Challenge has been listed as one of the top 30 free bank holiday activities - nationally! The event returns on Saturday 26th August from 10am-4pm with a spectacular line-up of activities having been announced for the day.

The event gets underway at 10am when the pits open, with karts on display in front of the town square. The very first competitor out of the blocks at 11am will be BBC Radio Lancashire's Graham Liver, racing a kart built by North Lancs Training Group.

The 170-metre long Soapbox track runs from Property Shop on Blackburn Road, down into Town Square in Accrington Town Centre, which is a fantastic track for spectators to line the streets. There will be pit lanes and raised areas to ensure a good view of the soapbox vehicles. The track will include jumps, water jumps, and competitors will be squirted with water pistols! All profits made from entry fees will go to Maundy Relief, with the Soapbox having raised over £5,000 to date for them.

This year, an interval will be added between the karting and what a line-up is in store. From Brazilian-style dancers and a samba band, to free Vuvuzelas and performances from popular ska band Blowjangles and the Hyndburn Comets Majorettes, this is a great chance to enjoy the August Bank Holiday weekend in style.

Visitors will also be encouraged to use the interval to visit local eateries, to #ShopLocal and enjoy the amazing food and drink on offer. There are also plenty of interesting stalls on the indoor and outdoor market to visit, with lots of charitable ones in attendance to raise funds too.

Back by popular demand, The Code Show will be a free attraction in Accrington Market Hall on the day. A local coding roadshow celebrating how 1980's Britain embraced the home computer. Do you remember the BBC B Micro, Sinclair ZX81, Sinclair ZX Spectrum, and Commodore 64?

Come along to play on the games - and be inspired to get into coding yourself. Exhibits also on display include a Sinclair C5 and 1980's technology, such as a dial up telephone and video recorder, that in the 21st century fits into your mobile phone as an app - over 25 free gaming machines!

Sponsors for the event include Hyndburn Borough Council, Sundown Solutions, Accrington and Rossendale College, Boohoo and Financial Affairs.

Cllr Marlene Haworth, leader of Hyndburn Borough Council, said: "We're looking forward to the Soapbox Challenge on Saturday, 26th August - it's a really busy, well supported event for the town. It's great to see the town filled with people enjoying themselves, and it really helps our local shops, traders and eateries to see so many visitors."

Ben Lee from Sundown Solutions, said: "Sundown had a fantastic day out at the Soapbox Challenge last year, so we couldn't wait to sign up to sponsor it again. It's a great day out for all the family! We'll also have The Code Show in the Market Hall, an interactive exhibition on gaming - and we might spot some future Sundown talent while we're there!

Morag Davis, centre principal for Accrington & Rossendale College, commented: "We are proud to be a main sponsor of this event. Our talented motor vehicle engineering staff and students are working together to build our soapbox and we at the college are really looking forward to supporting the event, which will be like a carnival with a samba band, Brazilian dancers, the Hyndburn Comet Majorettes, and Blowjangles band performing!"

Paul Daughtry, senior automation and engineering manager at Boohoo Group PLC, said, "This is the second time we've been involved with the Soapbox Challenge, we have stepped up to be a main sponsor and we can't wait to show off our kart. There will be some serious competition from the Boohoo team this year, and we can't wait for Radio Lancashire's Stephen Lowe to set us off! Come down on Saturday 26th August and have a great time!"

Murray Dawson, chair of #AmazingAccrington, commented: "The Soapbox Challenge is one of Accrington's flagship events and we love the challenge set to us every year to make it even bigger and better. We have a fantastic line-up of attractions for everyone to enjoy this year and with the addition of an interval for people to #ShopLocal and grab a bite to eat, this is going to be an amazing day for all the family."

Check out the Amazing Accrington website www.amazingaccrington.co.uk and their social media channels for more coverage from the event.

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