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Classic car comes to Leyland Festival's rescue in absence of the town's Popemobile

The Leyland-made Popemobile in 1982 for Pope John Paul II's visit to Lancashire.
The Leyland-made Popemobile in 1982 for Pope John Paul II's visit to Lancashire.
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The lack of a Popemobile at today’s Leyland Festival has been resolved at the eleventh hour – with a 1964 cream convertible Morris Minor coming to the rescue.

It comes after festival organisers revealed last month that the famous Leyland Popmobile – which for years has been used in the festival parade by the Mayor of South Ribble Council and his party – will be out of use for this year’s jamboree.

The Popemobile in the Britsh Commercial Vehicle Museum

The Popemobile in the Britsh Commercial Vehicle Museum

South Ribble Coun Derek Forrest, who is on the festival committee, told the Post that the day had been saved thanks to the classic British automobile.

Coun Forrest said: “It’s great for the festival that something could be sorted in time.”

READ MORE: Popemobile not taking to the roads for Leyland Festival 2018

No pictures of the car have been revealed prior to the festival, with it being kept under wraps before the grand reveal in the annual procession through the town.

Tony Harrison, chairman of the festival, said: “We’ll have 600 people walking in the procession with around 30 floats taking to the streets.

“We’ve putting the finishing touches to it now ready to get going.”

Tony added: “It’s going to be bigger and better than every before. Hopefully the weather is going to hold out!”

The festival, which this year has a World Books theme, kicks off in Hough Lane at around midday before the party continues in Worden Park an hour or so later.

Entry is £3 on the gate and free for under 16s.