Chitty Chitty ban ban

IT may have helped defeat the dastardly Baron and evil Childcatcher but one of the world's most famous cars has failed on its newest mission - being featured in the Lord Mayor of Norwich's Street Procession this weekend.

IT may have helped defeat the dastardly Baron and evil Childcatcher but one of the world's most famous cars has failed on its newest mission - being featured in the Lord Mayor of Norwich's Street Procession this weekend.

The original Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, from the childhood film of the same name, was set to give the celebrations a flying start as one of the attractions of the annual event but organisers were forced to withdraw the car at the eleventh hour as it does not have a valid MOT.

John Bulitude, spokesman at the Norwich Theatre Royal, who had been in negotiations with police, said: “It would have been easier if Chitty really did fly as a pilot's licence only takes a minimum of 45 hours to obtain.

“We would like to thank the legal teams at Norwich City Council for their efforts in trying to find a way around the issues and are very disappointed that Chitty will not be seen on the streets.”


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Harry Mitchell, head of news at Norfolk Constabulary, said all vehicles that were due to take part in the Lord Mayor's Procession had to be fully roadworthy with valid documentation.

He added: “The Chitty Chitty Bang Bang car does not have a valid MOT certificate and therefore breaches regulations.

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“We have no problem with the vehicle being securely fastened to a trailer so it can feature in the procession but our priority is the safety of the public and we cannot make exceptions, even for this fun, family occasion.”

Mr Bultitude added that the car would not look as good on a trailer and there were difficulties in finding a suitable low-rider.

The car will now head to Norwich later than expected for the Theatre Royal's open day on Saturday, August 8, from 10am until 4pm but will remain static.

Helen Selleck, events manager for Norwich City Council, said: “We are really disappointed Chitty Chitty Bang Bang cannot be part of our Lord Mayor's procession this year.

“Our events and legal teams have worked hard to try to make this happen, but although the road is closed for the annual procession, it is still classed as a public highway and the DVLA is clear all the vehicles in the procession need to be fully covered.

“People who go to see Chitty Chitty Bang Bang at the Theatre Royal will be able to enjoy seeing the car from the original film.

“Meanwhile, there will be 65 glorious floats in this year's procession - which is always an exciting and colourful spectacle.”

Norwich's Theatre Royal, on Theatre Street, will host a performance of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, featuring the original car, from Tuesday, August 18 until Saturday, September 5.

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