CLASSIC minis took part in an 80-mile magical mystery tour of the Cotswolds to raise money for an Oxfordshire cancer hospice.

Nearly 70 cars took part in the rally which was the brainchild of Gail Sinsbury, member of car club Mini Fixers, based in Lechlade.

Starting at Fairford Leisure Centre and finishing at the Trout Inn in Lechlade the route wound its way down narrow Cotswold lanes, through a ford in the village of Shilton and through various other picturesque villages and hamlets before arriving at the half way point - the steam railway station at Winchcombe run by the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Railway.

From the railway station the convoy of minis wound its way back out of the Windrush Valley passing Sudeley Castle, climbing steadily towards RAF Little Rissington air base and zig-zagging through more villages including Bourton-on-the-Water.

Gail said: "The club is quite new and I felt we needed something to put is on the map in the mini community "A mystery tour seemed like a good idea."

The drivers were raising funds for the Oxford-based Sir Michael Sobell House Hospice which looks after terminally ill patients and their families.

"It's always a nervous time when you haven't organised a tour before," said Rob Coltman, chairman of the Mini Fixers club. "We had visions of sending 70 minis out into the wilds of the Cotswold Hills never to be seen again.

"Thankfully all our pre-planning and trial runs paid off and no-one got hopelessly lost, all arriving safely at the finish."

Mr Coltman said the day was so successful that he had decided to make it an annual event.

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