The day I nearly robbed a Bank!

Well, our first wedding has come and gone and it was a great experience! The Bride and Groom, Carla and Ryan, looked fabulous and Betty played her part in the proceedings.

 

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Photo courtesy of David Hector Photos

Being involved in someone else’s wedding was as good as I thought it would be, and our role was to get the Groom and his party to the wedding venue on time. The journey from the pick up point to the venue was about 20 minutes, so as wedding suppliers’ tasks go, it was pretty straightforward.

However, I was suddenly aware of how important our various services are, and the responsibility we all have, to play our part in making this the best day of the Bride and Groom’s lives! And it’s no little responsibility in truth, because screwing up is not an option!

The realisation of this, took me back several decades to another time when I was driving another vehicle with a very important cargo, and I have to say I nearly screwed up! To be exact, I did screw up, but managed to resolve the situation.

I was 18 or 19 years old and had just returned to live in the Cotswold village where I’d grown up, and was working in the office of the local builder. One of their projects at the time, was converting a building in a nearby village into a Bank, to replace the old and no longer suitable building.

When the conversion was finished, the Builder asked me if I’d like to do a little driving job on the coming Saturday morning, which considering I’d get paid for it, I readily agreed to. It turned out that the little driving job was to move all of the Bank’s cash deposits from the old Bank to the new one! I’ve no idea how much it was but at a time before debit cards and electronic transfers, it must have been a lot!

money

I’ve learned in recent years, from the son of the Policeman in charge of the operation, that the whole process was to be kept as quiet and as low key as possible, which was why a humble builder’s van and not a secure armoured vehicle was being used. I’ve also since heard from someone who was working at the Bank at the time, that most of the staff were unaware of the process beforehand.

I duly turned up at the old Bank at  the appointed time, and there were very few people around, just enough to load the cash boxes into my van. There was a police car sitting in a nearby street keeping watch, but nothing really to indicate what we were up to.

police car

Now readers, it came time for my starring role! A plain clothed Policeman got in the van beside me and indicated it was time to move off and that the police car would follow. The ‘journey’ was all of 200 yards from the old Bank to the new one, so not a lot of time for things to go wrong, you’d think! I knew where the Bank was and exactly where I had to pull up, but for some reason, my brain must have disengaged because I just drove straight past the Bank  and was heading who knows where! I really, really wasn’t doing a runner with the spoils, I was just a half soaked teenager, probably with thoughts on the evening’s trip to Cheltenham and the usual night at the Pictures! I could sense a slight unease in the seat next to me, and then a sharp retort of ‘it was back there!’ Somewhat embarrassed, I stopped, turned the van around and slunk back to where I should have been! I think it was a good job it happened in a different era, as I’m sure reactions would be slightly different nowadays!

In light of this, I think I did quite well to get the Groom and co to the wedding without mishap, don’t you?

UPDATE – April 2017

I’ve recently heard that this rural Branch is set to close. Should I offer my services again?

To visit our website, please

scan the code below, or Click Here!

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Will you marry me?

I Recently met with Richard Shakespeare, Disability Consultant, Business Owner and Training expert at Richard Shakespeare Disability Consultants Limited. We met so that Richard could check out our London Taxi Wedding Car, to see if it was suitable for use as a wedding car for people with disabilities, or limited mobility.

He then wrote an article for his LinkedIn page, and he’s agreed that we can share his article here:

Richard“Without doubt one of the biggest questions you can ever ask or be asked is “Will you marry me”

Recently Andy Poole who runs White Taxi Weddings near Derby contacted me. Andy was in the process of starting a wedding car hire business, this in itself is not especially unusual but, his question did make me think. Using a former London Taxi Andy and his wife Jules wanted to help make a wedding day all the more special. Andy wanted to know if I was aware of any accessible wedding vehicles or if I thought there might be demand for one.

According to a leading website the wedding industry is worth billions of pounds to the UK each year and over 50% of us would consider hiring some form of transport for the big day.* The way in which we think about weddings, marriage and partnerships has changed in recent years. Only this week I read an article via the Daily Mail Online about another Derby based business who will be hosting the first ‘social media wedding’ in the UK. With over 40% of us thought to use some form of social media in planning our wedding, it is fair to say that the team at Status Social could really be onto something.

Everybody dreams of having the perfect day surrounded by friends and family as you start your journey with the person of your dreams. The more I thought about Andy’s question the more intrigued I became. I could see how I would plan the wedding, what kind of suit I would like and could even come up with ideas for the all-important honeymoon but, I couldn’t decide what I would do for transportation on the big day!

Andy has purchased a 1997 London Taxi and had it very tastefully refurbished, the vehicle still has all the elegance you would expect from a wedding car but is just something that bit different. “Betty” as Andy affectionately calls her is equipped with a range of ramps and grab handles which would make it easier for a person with a disability to get in and out of. If you need to use a wheelchair during your special day then this vehicle could be a viable option for you or for other people wanting to enjoy the occasion with you.

I recently met with Andy to take a look at his vehicle for myself and to explore just how accessible it might be if I were to be planning a wedding. I met Andy on a gloriously sunny day, the ideal day for a wedding in fact.

Upon entering the car for the first time the first thing that struck me was just how nice the car looked. Yes, it did of course look like a taxi but then that is part of the charm. Adding a beautiful red leather interior and a few other finishing touches Andy and his wife really have created something really quite remarkable.

Ramp3To find out more about White Taxi Weddings please visit the website by clicking here. Or if you fancy a social media wedding you can contact Status Social by visiting the website.

*Figures courtesy of the 2015 Wedding Report. http://www.confetti.co.uk/wedding-report

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