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Is a Mini fundraising marvel

Raring2go! franchisor Freddie St George has always had a passion for the iconic Mini car. His first car, purchased at 16, was a Mini and since then he has always had at least one in his garage, much to the chagrin of his wife. 

In 1990 he masterminded a fundraising event called the Italian Job, based loosely on the plot of the 1969 Michael Caine movie in which a band of British reprobates escape Turin after a daring bullion heist in three Mini Coopers. Freddie’s event didn’t lead to Minis outperforming police cars through crowded city centre streets or roaring through sewer pipes though, for the modern day self preservation society was about giving rather than taking. 

The first event involved 75 Minis travelling to Italy and back to raise money for children’s charities. In 1990 over £70,000 was raised for Children in Need and Childline, and it was this success that established the Italian Job as an important annual event.

For the next 20 years the Italian Job grew in size, stature and fundraising success. Fast forward to 2011 and the 21st edition is set to roll in October. To date Freddie’s Mini event has raised over £2.3 million, but he’s not resting on his laurels. He is determined to realise the Italian Job’s dream of buying a few Sunshine Coaches for this year’s chosen recipient, the Variety Club children’s charity.

For more information, including how to take part or donate, visit


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