National Byway wins sponsorship award - BikeBiz

National Byway wins sponsorship award

The 485 mile West Midlands loop of the National Byway plugged by Loyd Grossman helped Midlands Electricity (MEB) walk away with the Hollis Award for the best Corporate Sponsorship programme of 1999
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The Byway was the biggest part of MEBs Save your energy for Life programme.

The MEB National Byway programme consisted of a series of regional publicity activities including distribution of 10 000 Byway maps and Bike the Byway days which attracted 1000 leisure cyclists onto the heritage-themed route.

According to London PR agency Karen Earl more than 20 million OTS (opportunities to see) were achieved.

Were really proud of [this award] said National Byway director of operations Michael Breckon, the former marketing director of Raleigh.

This award isnt about map design or signage or painting lines on roads, it is about marketing the product, making people aware and putting bums on bicycle seats!

The campaign used Loyd Grossman as a celebrity tester of the route.

Grossman was a real pro, said Breckon.

Hes a director of English Heritage as well as being a good cyclist. We rode a number of sections together and he was interviewed by media all along the way. He loved the Byway concept and was fascinated by the route itself.

However, away from prestiguious wards ceremonies Breckon is finding the going tough. The Byway is taking longer to get on the ground than originally planned. Losing Hovis, the headline sponsor, didnt help but its the logistical logjam that grates the most:

Putting the Byway together, region by region, is proving to be an onerous task. Local authorities idea of time is often very different to anyone elses!

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