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About the Archive of Microcars

History

The Archive of Microcars was founded as the Register Of Unusual Microcars in 1980 by Edwin and Jean Hammond to cater for the growing number of microcar enthusiasts whose vehicles were not eligible for membership of any of the existing one-make clubs or registers.

The general definition of microcars is: An economy vehicle with either three or more wheels, powered by petrol/Diesel engines of no more than 700 cc or battery electric propulsion of the same power, and manufactured since 1944. This can be varied if justified by vehicle interests.

From 1980 the organisation grew with the stewardship of Edwin and Jean Hammond. As the numbers of cars being registered grew so the archive of documents and magazines grew. To help the DVLA the Rumcar organisation became part of the DVLA V765 vehicle registration system, helping to verify the authenticity of imported microcars or those seeking their original registration numbers.

The next development was the publishing of the Rumcar News magazine, which has been published four times a year since 1984. The magazine has become a work of reference for microcar collectors world-wide. The magazine draws on the content of the microcar document archive for many of its articles.

From the magazine the web site was created with a link to the Rumcar Forum internet chat room. With the growing importance of the Internet, so the importance of the web site has grown.

After 38 years of being a network of microcar enthusiasts and vehicle owners, with no legal status, it was time to turn the non-commercial enterprise into a charity that should ensure the survival of the organisation for the foreseeable future. The charity exists to maintain records of the existence of these rare small vehicles and to encourage their preservation and restoration, supported by the comprehensive document archive. The change into a charity in 2018 required a new name, which was agreed to be the Archive of Microcars in 2019.

The core of the organisation is the Register of Unusual Microcars, which encourages microcar owners to register their vehicles, to allow them to access information, and contact with other owners with similar vehicles. This is done with full security to ensure that personal details are never divulged without the authority of the vehicle owners. The vehicles that are listed on the register started in the UK and now includes vehicles on all continents across the world.