Numbers may have been down but we prefer quality over quantity, said George Bowie of Raw Experience on the last day of the show.
And we saw plenty of quality dealers.
The visitor figures were (last years numbers in brackets):
Sunday 2026 (2206)
Monday 1201 (1506)
Tuesday 1157 (1021)
Total 4384 (4733)
In 1999 there were 4493 visitors.
Overall visitor figures are not as important as the number of dealerships visiting and this figure has yet to be extracted from the attendance database.
Organiser David Hyde ascribes the drop in attendance to a combination of factors including Foot and Mouth disease, poor weather, a declining number of IBDs and the prospect of another show on the horizon, meaning the BAs June show in Harrogate.
Hyde stresses that the rumour that he is about to start working for the BA again is wholly without foundation:
There is absolutely no truth that my company is intending to work with the Bicycle Association to help run their show; neither do we have any intention of merging exhibitions in 2002.
My company, Leisure Expo, has made considerable investment in providing the industry with a strong trade show. We already give considerable funding to the industry in a variety of ways, and will continue to do so, but we are not about to give up something we have spent so long in building.
Next year, the Cycle and Leisure Show could have more leisure exhibitors present as the outdoor part of the ski-and-outdoor trade show, SOLTEX/GoOutdoors, has pulled out of the GMEX show. With no other show on the horizon, the Cycle and Leisure Show could pick up a few more Vaude-type exhibitors, making Al Fresco a reality.