It’s a journey that starts on the banks of the River Seine, crosses through France’s best wine regions, kisses the gateway to the Pyrenees, and finishes up with a splash in the sea on Barcelona’s city beach after driving across two european countries in three days.

Sounds like an instagrammable photo rich holiday but this is actually a driving challenge up mountains, through cities and heads south to the coast covering routes made famous by Top Gear.

The catch? Being able to drive 807 miles in an old banger that’s worth just £500 and can make the whole journey.

Local Businessman Brian Barr and three friends will be taking part in the ‘Barcelona or Bust Rallies’ Banger Rally Adventures later this year to raise money for children’s charity Cherry Trees leaving Northern France bound for the Spanish shore-lines taking in the famous bends of the N260 route.  

They’re calling for more people to sign up to the challenge and help raise more money for Cherry Trees in their own cars.

The quad will join hundreds of other drivers crossing Bordeaux, Andorra and the Catalan Countryside picking up points on the way, by completing challenges which in the past have included finding random statues in set locations, buying Chinese newspapers and finding homes of notable inventors.

The rally motoring test is not a competition of speed, but team work, camaraderie and fancy dress with both drivers and their cars in themed get-up for the three days.

Whilst none of the en-route challenges are made known to the teams in the days before, Brian is well prepared having taken part in the ‘Monte-Carlo or Bust’ challenge last year for Cherry Trees.

“This year we are really ready for all that will be chucked at us and are hitting the road prepared. A mini fridge stocked with chilled chocolate is packed, we know water pistols are a must after some ad-hoc water fights broke out and we’ve already got the road music cued on our phones – Freddie Mercury! Last year driving through St Bernard’s Pass was a memorable moment. We can’t encourage people enough to get involved by persuading a few mates to sign up, get an old banger, get it decorated and hit the road. The reward is the scenery and if you can do it raising money for children with disabilities back home in the UK you’re making the trip count for a really good cause.”

Brian and his team hope that people reading this will know of someone who loves driving, travel and challenges and would like to  sign up their own car and raise some money for Cherry Trees too. At Cherry Trees we are keen to hear from other groups of friends who are up for the old banger rally challenge, as an alternative and fun way to combine travelling and fundraising and hope others will join in the trip. 

The challenge kicks off on the 12th September 2019 and people can find out more about entering their own car into the challenge at:

Fancy dress along the way is all part of the fun! Image copyright@Brian Barr