History of

The Invicta Car Club

History of The Invicta Car Club

The idea of a club for owners of Invicta cars was first suggested by Mr Morton of Hull and The Invicta Car Club was inaugurated on St Valentine’s Day in 1937.

The Club Officers were Major Douglas-Morris as Patron, Donald Monro became Honorary Secretary, with Mr H. J. R. Broadbent as Honorary Treasurer and Mr L. Dyer as Chairman. The Committee included Mr Coates, Mr Evans, Mr English, Mr Durston, and Mr Rotherham who at that time was running the service depot at Flood Street, Chelsea. The membership was not large but was very enthusiastic, with many of the club members competing in a variety of competitive events, and in particular Prescott and Shelsley Walsh hill climbs. However, by the autumn of 1938 the club had been incorporated into the Bugatti Owners Club and gradually lost its separate identity.

In 1954 interest was revived and the club re-formed at a meeting at the Red Lion Hotel in Basingstoke. In November of that year the decision was made to operate as a section of the Vintage Sports Car Club.

The first AGM was held at the Swan’s Nest in Stratford upon Avon on 13th November 1955. Donald Monro was President and Chairman, and Flight Lieutenant F. H. Goodacre was Honorary Secretary. The latter post was taken over by Eric Bamford in October 1956.

At that time the section boasted 40 members but finances were in such a poor state that a collection was taken up at the AGM to raise some funds.

By 1959 Lieutenant Colonel Buckley had been elected President with Mr R. D. E. Spencer as Honorary Secretary, and membership numbers had risen to 56. During that period a hard core group of drivers were regularly competing in VSCC events.

These included Donald Monro, Jack Earle-Marsh, Bob Wood, John Shutler, Peter Moore, Gill Baster, Oliver Ormrod, Malcolm Skipp and Arthur Ainsworth.

At that time Burley Garage in the New Forest was run by John Shutler, and he worked on many of the Invictas that still exist today, and helped to keep the marque alive during the 1950’s and 1960’s.

In April 1965 the duties of Secretary were shared between Mr J. Jenkins and Mr T. Laurie, who entitled the newsletter ‘The Secretary’s Cauldron’, and produced it on ‘spirit duplicated’ foolscap paper every six weeks. 50 Members and friends attended the AGM held at the Hopcroft’s Holt Hotel, near Bicester, in Oxfordshire on Sunday 3rd April 1966. Proposals were made for a spares scheme at a cost of £2 per annum and Malcolm Skipp organised this scheme. It produced much needed spares including third gear sets for the Meadows gearboxes. ‘The Cauldron’ was to be supplemented by a magazine entitled the ‘100MPH’ with a total of twelve publications planned for the year.

The 1968 AGM was again held at the Hopcroft’s Holt Hotel where Mr Jenkins and Mr Laurie resigned but Malcolm Skipp continued as spares organiser. Mr A. E. Hutton was appointed Honorary Secretary and Editor of the magazine and newsletter, and for the first time it featured some commercial advertising. The last year of publication of the ‘100MPH’ magazine or any newsletters was 1969, and then the Section slipped into a long dormant period. However Invictas were active at VSCC race and speed events, with Bob Wood’s S Type ‘Felicity’ continuing to fly the flag for the marque throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s.

In 1989 an informal meeting was held at Bob Wood’s home and the club was re-formed with Simon Bull as Honorary Secretary, assisted by his wife Kay.

They produced a quarterly magazine of similar style to the former ‘100MPH’, but with pasted-in colour photographs, and membership numbers reached 66. Bob Wood was elected as President, and the Club prospered.

For the first time the post-war Black Prince cars were also included, and various sporting and social events were successfully organised during the subsequent years, but sadly by 1993 the Club was beginning to flounder again.

Fortunately Laurie Mayhead, Club Chairman, kept in regular touch with club members and with the help of Jo Moss Kitcher, a Christmas lunch was held at a pub near the Savernake Forest in order to help revitalise the club once again.

With Bob Wood and Laurie Mayhead still in the roles of President and Chairman respectively, the club then enlisted the help of Marion Rendall as Honorary Secretary and newsletter editor, whilst Tony Mottram was appointed as Honorary Treasurer.

When David MacKenzie passed away Richard Walpole became Deputy Chairman. 

By 2002 the S1 had been launched and this modern new Invicta was also welcomed into the club. In 2004 Jo Moss Kitcher was voted in as Honorary Secretary, and several Invictas were active in competitive events again, with Bob Wood, Jo Moss Kitcher, Trevor Swete, Chris Ball, Martin Kolnberger and others all competing at race meetings, sprints and hill climbs both in the UK and abroad. 

The Invicta Car Club was back on an even keel, and Duncan McGregor became Archivist and Registrar until he passed away in 2016, when the role was taken on by James Wood. Peter Storrie was appointed Chairman after Laurie Mayhead passed away, and Peter held the role for ten years until his passing in 2020, when Michael Taylor was appointed as his successor. The Editor’s role was held by Paul Gregory until 2013 and then handed over to Martin Mayhead, and Alan Brown took over as Honorary Treasurer from Tony Mottram in 2017. 

Bob Wood continued to actively promote the Invicta marque and enthusiastically support the club as President until he passed away in 2022.