The Spirit of Ecstasy lives on.

Debates occur about putting mascots onto TA 14s, some do and some don’t.

KBP 161, chassis 22388 had no such qualms and was graced in 1986 by a beautiful 7.5 stone Portugese Prima Ballerina Fatima Brito. Fatima is still dancing and KBP is still with her long term owner.


International Alvis Weekend 2014 is now over and hopefully all the cars are now safely home. It was a great Weekend, much down to the very hard work of the organizing Committee and the lovely weather. The 14s were out in strength.



Wandering around in the sunshine on the Sunday on the archetypal English summer day was as good as it gets. As everyone arrived at the venue they were greeted by the wonderful site of TB 14 ‘Ruby’, chassis no.23577, looking stunning and matching the Alvis banners either side. There was also a similar coloured red TB 21 attending and conversations were overheard as to the merits of the flamboyant TB 14 styling versus the more traditional Alvis radiator. As someone said it is like Marmite (Vegemite for readers down under) you either love or hate. A lovely selection of Saloons and Dropheads attended but no Woodies. The cherished gun metal TB 14 of the late Melle Visser came across with Maria in company with a  TB 21 so they made a very interesting convoy.

Red Triangle did three very interesting and thought provoking presentations and the synopsis of the one on 21st Century motoring is shown under Articles. Many of us are struggling with options as to whether to go electronic and if so by how much. ‘Aunty May, 21830, now has LED headlight bulbs. Too many journeys on side lights in the gathering darkness prompted that one and the knowledge that they could easily be reverted back. Be careful with halogen as there are stories that they can burn out the switches and cause a fire. She also now has an electronic regulator within the original case. Again easy to revert back. I remain uneasy about doing this and have put the brakes on any further electronic innovations for the time being.

Whilst reading through an old AOC Bulletin No.33, April 1956 I came across a lovely piece of writing.
‘While passing through Kirby Moorside, the nearest town to home, I espied the object of my desire standing outside a garage. It had a placard in the windscreen ‘For Sale’. I always think cars bearing these notices and things written on the windows have a frightfully dejected look, and I’m sure that if cars were capable of emotion and had tear-glands, their head-lamp-glasses would be moist under such circumstances’. It did not refer to a Fourteen but to a Speed 20 and needless to say the writer bought and kept the car.
There is now a Black, former Concours winning Mulliners Saloon, hopefully with not too moist head-lamp glasses, looking for a new home due to anno domini of her friend, patron and AOC Member. KLH 473, chassis 22829. She was featured on the front cover of the 50th Anniversary TA14/TB14 Register and is also in The Gallery. She is a well known car and a great opportunity to acquire one of these lovely Saloons.

Reading the reports of Southern events in 1954/1955, the exploits of Miss E.J.Chapman make interesting reading. Miss Chapman in her TB 14 came first in the Southern Section winter rally beating two Speed 20s and a Firebird in the placings. She was also well placed in other events. Now, to place the car and did Miss Chapman retain her interest in Alvis? Did she marry an Alvis man? She did marry as further along the time line she is still doing well with her TB 14 as Mrs  Dowle but by 1956/1957 she no longer claims the TB 14 and has moved to Croydon. We lose touch with her as the 1957/1958 Year Book is published. The TB 14 was last heard of with a long term owner in Bishop Auckland but she disappears by 2012.

Continuing the speed theme, an owner with a TA 14 converted to TB14 and open sports body, had her maximum speed checked against a police car clock in 1960. Two runs in opposite directions gave 89.9 m.p.h. and 92 m.p.h. We were all young once!

In The Gallery we now have a charming period photo of TB14 chassis 23564.
This car was given to Emilio Gizzi for his 21st birthday present when he finished his National Service. His family were from Italy and were prominent in the Glasgow Ice Cream scene. The photo shows a young Emilio at the wheel. His daughter said he had wonderful memories of the car and for his 70th birthday a replica cake was made, hope to get a photo of that too. As the car is now for sale for restoration it is to be hoped that she will be brought back to her former glory.

‘Annie’ came to call in the shape of a lovely Maroon Mulliners Saloon, chassis 23346, pictures in the Gallery. She brought her new friend Richard and is looking forward to some good fettling. As she went to leave, a man got out of a BMW 7 series, looked over and said ‘what a beautiful car’. She had a good run to the International Weekend and overtaking a modern car on the M4 was clocked at an accurate 70 m.p.h.!

Finally do consider acquiring the Alvis Archive USB memory stick/DVDs if you have an interest in Alvis History. They contain a complete record of past AOC bulletins going back to the very first in 1951 as well as the earlier ALVISTAS. The price has now been reduced to £25 and they make good Christmas presents.

The Articles and Snippets sections of the site will be updated shortly and you can also search by keyword. Details on the main site.

Happy Motoring

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1 Response to The Spirit of Ecstasy lives on.

  1. Colin Newby says:

    Eillen, my last 14 TickfordKLE 22296, came to me via an owner since 1960, I was assured the car came with its original Running Indian mascot. obviously the first owner liked his 4.3, wonder how he coped with the 14? Colin

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