From education to employment

Team Chandlers Cembrit has won the 2019 Pavestone Rally – with help from students at East Sussex College.

Team Chandlers and Cembrit Triumph in Rally

Led by rally driver Trevor Mudd of Chandlers Building Supplies and accompanied by co-driver Sam Hanks of Cembrit, the team took home the overall winner’s trophy and also scooped the Best Dressed Car Award for its fully ‘pimped up’ three-wheeled Reliant Rialto, affectionately known as Raquel.

The family-owned builders merchants bought the 1986 classic three-wheeled car on eBay for £200. It was then handed over to the College’s Automotive Training Centre in Hastings, where 43 students worked on rebuilding the engine and overhauled the bodywork.

Trevor said: “This year’s rally was our most challenging yet but having come so close to winning last year we were hungry to get our hands on the trophy. We pulled out all the stops, met every madcap daily challenge head-on and raised an incredible amount of money!

“Raquel was definitely the third member of our team this year. There were moments when we weren’t sure she’d make it, including on the trip from the UK to the starting line in France. But, thanks to the expert work of the automotive students at East Sussex College, she pulled through and helped us to win!”

Trevor and Sam raised in excess of £7,000, surpassing their initial fund-raising target by over £2,000. A total of £133,000 was raised by the rally for the four selected charities.

Sue McKinney, head of marketing at Chandlers Building Supplies said: “Trevor and Sam can always be relied on to go the extra mile. They threw themselves into the daily challenges posed by this year’s rally with typical enthusiasm. As well as persuading a crowd of Harley Davidson bikers to dance the conga, they convinced an Austrian policeman to photograph them in the back of his car and they also both got tattoos!”

Following on from her triumph at this year’s rally, the decision has been taken to retire Raquel. Any motor museums and Reliant Rialto enthusiasts are invited to get in touch to offer her a home.

The Pavestone Rally challenges UK builder’s merchants to raise money for its three chosen charities: Rainy Day Trust, Teenage Cancer Trust, and Variety. The goal is to drive a car, worth less than £500, across Europe in four days, while in full fancy dress. Chandlers Building Supplies has entered the Pavestone Rally for the last three years, finishing in first place in 2016, and second in 2017 and 2018 – the team also won Best Dressed Car and Best Dressed Team in 2018.

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