Bristol Rovers Community Trust improve services thanks to new acquisition

A Bristol community charity has moved into vehicle purchasing for the first time with the acquisition of a new luxury minibus from Vanaways.

Bristol Rovers Community Trust will save and generate precious funds through the purchasing model, following expert advice from club supporters who work in finance and vehicles.

Originally launched in 1992 as part of the PFA’s nationwide Football in the Community initiative, the Trust works with a wide range of groups around the city, offering social inclusion, health, education and sports participation projects.

Now those who benefit from the Trust’s services will enjoy the use of a brand new, bespoke Ford Transit minibus which will be used to support those operations.

Adam Tutton, chief executive of the Trust, said he was persuaded to purchase a new vehicle after discussions with Nick Kew from Vanaways and local business finance expert Sam Bilo.

“Our previous vehicle was tired and in need of replacement and, following discussions with our advisers, it became clear that purchasing was a much better option than contract hire,” he said.

“Funds are precious for all charities and we have an opportunity to use this vehicle as a way of generating revenue for us. Plus it will hold its value and be something we can sell on when we come to replace it, providing us with a deposit for our next vehicle.

“Most importantly, the groups we support have already given us brilliant feedback on how much better it is. For the elderly users especially, it is easy to access, extremely comfortable and spacious, too.

“Whether it’s delivering supplies for community events, transporting our over 60s Extra Time Group to local attractions, or taking our Community College students to and from our matches, this minibus is essential to our mission.

“So we can’t thank Nick and Sam enough for their advice and support, and in particular Vanaways for their ability to source the perfect vehicle for us with efficiency and confidence in the process.”

Sam, director at Crystal Business Finance SW, has supported the Trust for many years and, as it became clear the previous minibus needed replacing, called on Nick Kew from Vanaways regarding advice on the charity’s requirement with Nick Kew from Vanaways. The pair met at the Synergy Networking group, which meets in Bristol for breakfast every Thursday morning.

Together they came up with a funding package and vehicle solution which was quickly fulfilled thanks to Vanaways’ unrivalled relationships with vehicle manufacturers around the UK.

“As well as this solution being the most financially practical for the charity, it’s great for Vanaways to be able to give something to support the community,” said Nick.

“It’s a significant upgrade on what the Trust was using previously and is an asset which they will find easy to sell when they want to replace it.

“While contract hire does suit some larger companies who don’t want the administrative burden of replacing large fleets, we would definitely encourage smaller organisations in particular to consider the purchasing route.

“Charities and SMEs often get an unpleasant surprise regarding mileage excesses, condition charges and other penalties at the end of their contract.

“What we want to offer these organisations is a partnership which is in our customers’ best interests. Our business will continue to thrive if we offer the best service we can.

“So we’re delighted to help the Trust and look forward to spotting it out and about around the streets and neighbourhoods of Bristol.”