"A number of companies have decided to go their own way in 2005 and it would be ridiculous to try to run any kind of major event without sufficient response," said Leisure Expo's David Hyde, a 16-year veteran of staging Brit bike trade shows. A 'year out' could be the answer to the 'problem' of a multitude of competing hotel shows, said Hyde.

Hyde shelves Spring trade show

"We have always tried to work with the industry and to provide events that it both needs and wants. The two venue roadshow, whilst attracting a good number of outlets has always been a stop gap," said Hyde.

"The only way to get buyers out in force is to bring back one single venue event and to get the support of the major companies. We will be talking to potential exhibitors and look forward to reporting back with a positive response."

There will be a Spring trade show organised by Leisure Expo but it will be a smaller affair.

"A number of suppliers still need to show in spring, and we are putting together a roadshow, albeit in smaller venues, to run in the middle of March," said Hyde.

"We will also continue to run the September roadshow in its current fashion. This has worked very well for the regular exhibitors and is the ideal low cost option for showing new bike ranges."

Hyde wants backing for a ‘big show’ in 2006, like the good old days:

"When we ran the Harrogate and then the NEC shows, buyers came out in droves. They knew they would see perhaps 75% of the industry and could guarantee to have a worthwhile visit. Now the buyer has to attend a host of events to see just a fraction of that. We have ended up in a ludicrous situation that benefits neither the buyer or supplier.

"A number of people have told me that a year out could be the answer, so that we can all have time to put together a real event again. I am intent that both the BA and the ACT will be actively involved and we will endeavour to ensure that the National Cycle and Leisure Show 2006 will have their full backing and support.

"We will be canvassing the industry to determine which companies will commit to a single venue show and of course will be influenced by their opinion. The show must have a strong exhibitor base to ensure dealer support."

Major suppliers, such as Giant, refused to commit to Hyde’s Spring roadshows, leaving big gaps.

And with Fisher Outdoor Leisure and Madison going their own ways, it was becoming increasingly likely leisure Expo’s Spring roadshows would have to be scaled back.

The announcement of Core Bike, a one-hotel show staged on behalf of eight high-end, niche suppliers, was also harmful to Hyde’s chances of staging a big Spring event.

Darren Mabbott of Silverfish said Core Bike was looking to be a winner:

"The feedback we’ve had from dealers has been phenomenal so it’s looking like attendances are going to be very high."

Core Bike now has a website, an offshoot from Ison Distribution’s site. Pre-registration is recommended, said Mabbott.


David Hyde wants IBDs to email him if they want "a strong effective National Show in 2006."

Email the word ‘yes’ to opinion@exhibitions-uk.com

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