The SADCASE Story

The 'SADCASE Story' has kindly been documented by Chris Mason. Chris has seen the Club from its conception to its current day format. Chris remains a valued member of the Club and member of the Gearbox committee.

After the first meeting at the end of 2009, the first Tuesday night in the month continued as SADCASE club night in the Crown at Cootham. The original club motto was “If you love it, so do we”. A windscreen badge was made for members and a simple system of membership cards was introduced. Word started to get around about the free wheeling car club whose members delighted in calling themselves SADCASES and more people started turning up. Flyers saying who we were produced and placed under windscreen wipers at every opportunity and a website was set up.

To cope with the increasing membership that was by now coming from a widening catchment area, the move was made to two separate locations (large car parks being the main qualification) on the second and fourth Tuesdays in the month.

In the summer of 2010, we were asked to take part in what was then the Storrington Village Summer Show, which was run jointly by the local Rotary and Lions Clubs. In the space we were allocated we were able to accommodate about 130 classic and sports cars. They proved to be a huge attraction.

As a result SADCASE became increasingly involved in the village show. In 2016, the Rotary/Lions announced that they no longer had the resources to do the show. By then we had done a couple of ‘Spring Gatherings’ In the Storrington Library car park, in association with Horsham District and Storrington Parish Councils, that had proved to be very popular with the locals. So the Storrington Parish Council came to us and asked us to put on a summer show on the recreation ground, they undertook to deal with event licences, risk assessments and pay the insurance. As well as providing the cars, we had to take care of catering, entertainment, promotion, toilets and crowd control. We estimated that we would get maybe 200 cars, but in the event we got 400! The number took us completely by surprise and it was a tight squeeze.

There was a repeat performance in 2017. As I think everyone knows, circumstances saw us at Ford airfield in 2018 with 600 cars attending. 2019 saw a smaller more relaxed Storrington Show exclusively for SADCASE members and then on to Ford again, where this time, some 2000 cars turned up! I think that this might have been the straw that broke the camels back for some who were organising Gearbox members at the time?

A number of smaller but no less enjoyable meetings have punctuated the SADCASE years. Spring and autumn breakfast gatherings at the Pagham Beach Cafe have been particularly popular, as has a gathering with the members of the Southdowns Gliding Club at their Parham airfield; there have been other one off events. The introduction of National Drive it Day has resulted in some very pleasant and well organised SADCASE tours around the Sussex countryside.

For a few years we had “Not the Christmas Party” at the end of January. Essentially, a dinner and dance, sometimes themed, or sometimes with a guest speaker. These petered out because it became increasingly difficult to cater for all tastes.

Over the years, our activities have attracted the attention of local media and the national motoring press which has probably contributed to membership number.