Category Archives: women

Usually about women and for women

Brighton and Hove Motor Show | VIP Guests

This blog is mainly for readers within striking distance of Brighton.

We’re getting very excited.

We’re exhibiting at the Brighton and Hove Motor Show at the fab AmEx Stadium on Saturday 10 June (10am to 5pm) and on Sunday 11 June (11am to 4pm). Please visit us to see what we do to empower women drivers!

There hasn’t been a Motor Show in Brighton for many years but with a venue like this one, riding on the back of the AmEx being a Premiership Stadium now (!!) we’re confident it’s going to become a really memorable and growing annual event.

So we’re delighted to be supporting this, on behalf of women drivers, alongside headline sponsors Mobil1 and Rivervale Leasing as well as leading local dealerships Caffyns (VW/Audi), Tesla, Lookers (Mercedes/Smart), Yeomans (Toyota), Brighton Mitsubishi, Hendys (Renault/Dacia), Tates (Citroen/DS/Hyundai/Kia) and Porsche Centre Mid Sussex.

We’ll be asking them all, via Twitter (@FOXYTweets) which car models they’re bringing for us to see.

You’ll also find Heart Radio, the Platinum Publishing Group and Brighton and Hove Independent, all doing their bit to make sure this show is a success and becomes an annual event into Brighton’s future.

Finally it’s a free to enter event (unlike 2017’s London Motor Show that cost £17), providing you’ve registered in advance and via their website. So you can afford to come!

This is FOXY’s first Motor Show ever and we’re determined to bring a distinctly female flavour to balance out a likely male bias “because women drive as well as men… and often a lot better.”

Haha. Sorry guys. But the important thing is that we women influence between 80-90% of all car sales so it’s best to get us involved at the earliest possible stage!

A Family Day Out in Brighton

Yes, if fast (gorgeous looking and exotic) cars float your boat, driven by James Bond lookalikes of course, there’ll be lots of performance cars at the Brighton and Hove Motor Show and leading Sussex dealerships a-plenty organising test drives we’re told.

As you might expect, FOXY’s more at home in the Family Zone (that’s the Falmer side of the AmEx) relatively close to the Go Kart track and with a Bouncy Castle and Top Gear simulator as our family fun neighbours. Cool!

We look forward to meeting Brighton based Mumpreneurs and Athena business network members as well as all local motoring mums and daughters of course.

And there’s something in it for you all so DON’T PASS US BY…

OK, we’re not planning to be as physically active or demanding as they will be .

Instead, we’re offering pre-registered female drivers a number of FREE lifetime online gift subscription to FOXY Lady Drivers Club, on a first come, first served basis.

Come and activate yours at the FOXY stand, to enjoy really useful support services that put females first – like preferential car insurance, affinity car buying deals, motoring offers, VIP treatment and a whole package of stress-busting* support services.

*We know from experience that motoring can be very stressful for many females. Too many of us suffer from serious anxiety as a result of accidents, road rage, partner criticism, motorways and the total responsibility for the safety of any child passengers.

Please consider timing your visit to coincide with one of our VIP Guest visits. In this way you can find out about the likes of learning to drive, tyre safety, organising motoring events (at clubs, employee staff rooms, associations, dealerships) and driving overseas perhaps.

The following VIP Guests will be attending the FOXY Lady Drivers Club stand in the Family Zone, close to Entrance A (ie outside the Club shop in the Seagulls Fan Zone area). NB: This schedule may be updated via social media ie Twitter, on the day..

This is YOUR chance to visit the FOXY Lady Drivers Club stand to find out about the following motoring and business related topics.

ABOUT LEARNING TO DRIVE AND CHANGES TO THE DRIVING TEST

Saturday 10 June – 12 noon to 1pm

VIP Guest – Sue Blinco from Sussex Driving School.

Sue is highly qualified (one of the best qualified there are) and a FOXY Lady Approved Driving Instructor as you’d expect.

If you have a rising 17 year old who is keen to drive, this is your chance to ask Sue for advice or about changes to the Driving Test. And if you’re a nervous driver, ask her (and FOXY) for recommendations.
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ABOUT DRIVING – AS A WORKING MUM

Saturday 10 June – 2pm to 3pm

VIP Guest – Claire Jones-Hughes of Claritas Media.

Claire is an expert in all matters social media and manages the busy Mumpreneurs Network in Brighton.

She’s also a francophile with lots of experience of driving in France – and useful tips to share.

Come and talk to Claire about family motoring at home and in France. She knows how important your car is and how tricky it can be to manage its care, alongside family and work.

You could also ask her about The Mumpreneurs Networking Club in Brighton.

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HOW TO ORGANISE A MOTORING EVENT FOR WOMEN/STAFF

Saturday 10 June – 3pm to 4pm

VIP Guest – Steph Savill – FOXY Lady Drivers Club Founder

Whether you are a female friendly employer, organise a club or an association of sorts it makes good sense to organise a motoring event designed to appeal to men and women alike, to raise their awareness of the important safety-related issues they need to know.

So why not discuss this with me on the day and see how I can help?
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ABOUT DRIVING IN FRANCE

Sunday 11 June – 12 noon to 1pm

VIP Guest – Kicki Smith – ITE Travel Expert in Sussex.

Kicki is a member of the Athena Brighton South Downs Group and a veritable travel expert so she can help you organise your motoring holiday of course.

But today she’s on hand to tell you what you need to know about about driving in France. More rules bien sur… so we all need to know the latest savvy motoring hacks.

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ABOUT TYRE SAFETY

Sunday 11 June – 2.30pm to 3.30pm

VIP Guest – Steph Savill – FOXY

A subject dear to my heart – to keep you, your family, other motorists and pedestrians as safe as possible.

If nothing more, at least I can show you how to do the 20p tyre tread safety check and give you some simple tyre safety advice face to face.
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But if none of these topics hit the spot for you, come say hello and leave us any questions/messages in our Brighton and Hove Motor Show Visitors Book and we’ll get back to you during the following week.

Here’s how to find out what FOXY Lady Drivers Club does to empower women drivers in their motoring lives.

I hope to see many of our Club members at the AmEx on 10-11 June! Be sure to say hello.

FOXY

Win VIP lunch at Silverstone

If you’re a grown up and perhaps it’s been quite a while since you had a driving refresher course, we always recommend members look at IAM Roadsmart options.

And here’s a fab offer to encourage you to find out more…

To celebrate the launch of their Mature Driver Review, IAM Roadsmart is offering two competition prizes (each for two people) to win a three-course lunch with legendary rally driver Paddy Hopkirk at the (BRDC) British Racing Drivers Club Clubhouse at Silverstone Circuit on Thursday 15 June 2017.

The BRDC Clubhouse is not normally open to the public so this is an added venue bonus where prize winners will meet the great man himself and hear some of the amazing stories that have made Paddy such a legend in the world rallying scene.

Motorsports legend – Paddy Hopkirk MBE

Most famous for winning the 1964 Monte Carlo and 1967 Acropolis Rallies, Paddy also raced at the fearsome Le Mans 24 Hour race as well as many other circuits around the world. He was also greatly admired for giving up a sure win in the 1968 London-Sydney Marathon to rescue a fellow competitor from his burning car.

But the photo we’ve chosen to illustrate is Paddy re-taking his Advanced Driver test which is testament to his commitment to being as good and conscientious a driver as possible on today’s roads.

Just imagine trying to tell him where he was going wrong! As if…

How to enter this competition

For a chance of winning this unique prize, just email your answers to the following three questions to events@iam.org.uk by noon on 1 June.

1. What car did Paddy Hopkirk drive when he won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally?

2. Who was Paddy’s co-driver in the 1964 Monte Carlo rally?

3. What was that car’s registration number?

Paddy Hopkirk MBE is IAM Roadsmart’s Mature Business Ambassador.

FOXY issues Red Card for Oaks Vehicle Service Centre in Hersden

We are issuing a Red Card via this blog. This means we are blacklisting Oaks Vehicle Service Centre in Hersden, a village just east of Canterbury in Kent. This is because they are not, and never have been, a FOXY Lady Approved garage, despite pretending to be by carrying our logo at their website without our permission.

Earlier this year they signed and completed an order form to subscribe to our female friendly garage network. After we’d checked their IMI credentials we set up their FOXY Page and Club listing before issuing our invoice, payable within 30 days.

After 30 days, we nudged the garage for payment several times, by email and phone, without success. This is a rare instance for FOXY because garages usually pay us promptly to get their Subscriber Pack which includes Female Friendly Approved promotional materials and online gift memberships of FOXY Lady Drivers Club for female customers.

Finally we caught up with their elusive business manager and requested a card payment to speed matters up on both sides. We were given card details but the card failed when the bank declined this later on.

FOXY is blacklisting Oaks Vehicle Service Garage in Kent

Having exhausted every reasonable method to obtain payment for their order or to obtain an explanation for a delayed/failed payment, FOXY’s Area Manager referred this to me.

I then left an ansafone message and emailed the business manager, asking for a final explanation or rectification of the situation.

We are not unreasonable people here but we are professionals. Clearly a business that would pass off membership of our scheme and treat FOXY this badly is not one we’d want to introduce to women in Canterbury even when we are perfectly within our rights to insist on the full subscription payment.

After an email explaining Oaks’ options, including our issuing a Red Card within The Club, the garage’s business manager offered to pay our bank charges (an estimated £20) for the failed card payment and remove the FOXY Lady Approved logo from their website.

I agreed to this so we could all move on. We re-invoiced the garage by return (that’s ten days ago now) and requested this payment and the removal of our logo from their website by 18 April 2017.

A week later this second invoice remains unpaid and our logo is still in place at their website.

This constitutes ‘passing off’ in law and we’ll be reporting this to Trading Standards.

Their business manager is also a member of the IMI (Institute of the Motor Industry) which means he has signed the same ethical business promise as I have.

But he has not honoured his by
1) placing a sales order and failing to pay for this
2) using the FOXY Lady Approved logo without permission/purporting to be a member of this scheme when he is not
3) failing to do what he said he would do ie not paying a revised invoice or removing our logo as requested
so we’ll be reporting him to the IMI accordingly.

Fortunately the issue of a Red Card is a rare occurrence for FOXY but I have no hesitation in issuing one to Oaks Service Centre on this occasion because of their evidently premeditated and cavalier commercial behaviour in their dealings with us.

FOXY Lady Approved garages in Canterbury

To avoid any confusion, our FOXY Lady Approved ie female friendly garages in the Canterbury area are

Protyre Canterbury
Dargate MOT Centre
Six Mile Garage

Female Motoring feedback

If you’d like to tell us about a female friendly UK motoring business that isn’t on our FOXY Lady Approved network yet please do so here.

FOXY

Norwich’s female friendly garage and car dealer choice

Grant Long, NMG’s MD – photo ack: AM -Online.com
The Norfolk Motor Group (NMG) is a family run and FOXY Lady Approved garage and car dealership group in Norwich.

This means it is both a Female Friendly Approved business and employer in Norwich.

To join our approved network requires automotive businesses to demonstrate a minimum package of credentials which NMG has exceeded, for the following reasons.

Ladies Evenings

We first met NMG in the run up to their Ladies Evening in mid-February when more than 120 local women drivers attended this highly social evening covering important motoring-related issues such as driving attitudes & behaviour, DIY car maintenance checks and an entertaining session providing memorable advice and demonstrating self defence techniques.

These events are always fun first.

But they also inform and educate women about their critical personal safety, driving safety and vehicle safety. Everyone comes away with at least one important and timely message, and of course this reflects positively on the perceived ethics of the organiser because only businesses that truly want to give something back to their local community are prepared to invest the time and resource towards a free activity which isn’t actively selling cars.

New Car Sales, Used Car Sales and Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles

Having said that, NMG’s main business is obviously selling and repairing cars.

They hold Kia and Suzuki franchises so if you drive these makes of cars, or would like to, in or near Norwich, this is where to come to buy them, trade them in or to have them serviced and repaired.

NMG also sell other makes and models of approved used family cars as well as Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (WAVs) so it’s a business that covers the majority of transport needs.

And which women know they can trust.

Signs Of Measurable Quality

We look for all signs of measurable quality before accepting garages or car dealers on to our network. This is because used car sales and car servicing are unregulated areas in the motor industry and too few staff are licensed to do these jobs.

One of the best things about choosing a franchised dealership rather than an independent is the reassurance that they have been approved by the manufacturer they represent.

Another standard FOXY looks for is EITHER that the business (used car dealers and independent garages too) operates to a Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) Approved Code of Practice scheme OR is listed on the IMI Professional Register.

In this case many members of NMG staff are Master Technicians, others are trained in the latest electric and hybrid technologies and the business is a member of the CTSI’s New Car Code, Car Sales Code and Service and Repair Code operated by The Motor Ombudsman.

From a customer service point of view, NMG is open 5 and half days a week for car servicing, MOT, repairs and parts. There’s a courtesy bus, a fleet of courtesy cars and a local collection and delivery vehicle service.

Sales Departments are open 7 days a week, including most Bank Holidays, and only close on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and Easter Sunday.

They also support many local groups, schools, clubs & charities.

Female Feedback

The final yet critical ingredient is for FOXY to monitor female feedback in addition to NMG’s existing and very high customer satisfaction scores. By using our certificates in their business they are actively courting ALL feedback and giving females a gift membership of FOXY Lady Drivers Club as a thank you for their time. The point of this is that whilst we all expect feedback to be positive, if it wasn’t, NMG still wants to know, so they can put it right.

And perhaps that’s the main reason why this business passes our FOXY test with flying colours.

1/ Because their motto is ‘Nobody Tries Harder Than NMG…Nobody‘!
2/ Because they evidently want to do a better job for women drivers, by joining this scheme.
3/ Because they are dedicated to doing this from the top of NMG to the showroom floor – we’re dealing with NMG’s Managing Director who definitely sees this as a long term commitment.

All this is good news for women drivers in and around Norwich. If that’s you, then I invite you to visit their branches in Norwich and put your name down for a future Ladies Evening at 79 Mile Cross Lane.

They may even offer you a gift membership of FOXY Lady Drivers Club for doing this.

FOXY

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For More Information

NMG’s HQ is 79 Mile Cross Lane in Norwich, NR6 6TX
Please read NMG’s business story.
Kia and family car sales tel: 01603 775100
Suzuki new and used cars tel:01603 418700
NMG family car, WAV and SUV centre tel: 01603 401044

New Year Motoring Resolutions | tick

This year I’m going to put my New Year resolutions in writing so there’s no getting away from them. Here goes.

In 2017 I’m going to (ie try to)…

1. use my car less when it’s local and walk more.
2. get on my bike more (and not keep making excuses all the time…)
3. check my car tyres monthly.
4. go new tyre shopping when tyre tread is 3mm not 1.6mm tread (I’ll use the 20p coin to check this
5. find more occasions to spread the word about tyre safety lessons I’ve learned.
6. smile not snarl when drivers behave badly/wind me up.
7. keep within the speed limits (but not drive too slow that others get too frustrated).
8. never drink and drive.
9. offer to be the designated driver whenever the driver thinks they’re OK after a couple of beers.
10. diarise all my important diary dates eg MOT, car servicing/tax/insurance renewals so I don’t forget/can shop around/am in control.

Happy New Year resolutions to everyone.

If you’d like to add or share yours, please do so at @FOXYTweets or FOXY Lady Drivers Club’s Facebook Page.

FOXY