Obituaries

R C Vickers, MC

Ralph Cecil Vickers MC died at the age of 79 last September and was buried at Holy Trinity, Brompton. Educated at Cambridge, he acquired a Lea-Francis before leaving University, thus following in his father's wheel-tracks, as this gentleman was a great enthusiast, who at one time contemplated financing the Zoller supercharger business. On leaving Cambridge Vickers entered the family stock-broking business in which he remained until his retirement, earning high respect in the City.

He proved a good amateur racing driver, at first with a Lea-Francis and then with a GP Bugatti, and proposed by his friend C T Delaney, was elected to the BRDC in 1934. He had a nasty experience in one long distance race when one of the wheels of the Bugatti collapsed. Good company, always cheerful, it was said of Vickers that whenever he entered a room it was as if another light had been switched on.

Dennis (Bill) Elwell-Smith

The death of Bill Elwell-Smith on September 11, his 82nd birthday, has robbed the AMOC of one of its most stalwart, enthusiastic and knowledgeable members. Bill joined the AMOC when it was re-formed in 1948 and was, for many years, the technical consultant for pre-war cars.

Bill left school at an early age and after the war built up his business as a precision engineer and consultant. In 1962, representing the club, he took over the stock of AM spares, patterns and drawings from Friary Motors, and since then has been virtually the sole manufacturer and supplier of parts for the pre-war cars. With his two Aston team cars, LM2 and LM 10, he competed for forty-four years at VSCC, AMOC, BDC, and many other club events, gaining countless awards. Last year he took LM2 to the Le Mans retrospective.

One of Britain's true eccentrics, he could be both dogmatic and modest. He will be sorely missed by all pre-war Aston owners and their cars. Our condolences go to his sister Yolanda and to Rob Davies his partner, who fully intends to continue the business.