News : Former Rover public relations legend Denis Chick retires

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

After enjoying a motor industry career spanning six decades – most of it with Rover – long-serving public relations boss, Denis Chick, has finally decided to hang up his automotive spurs.

Denis Chick, the former Rover Group and latterly Vauxhall Motors’ Communications Director, retires after many years at the top of his game.

To those who know the people in the background as well as the cars themselves, Denis Chick is a formidable force and known quantity. Denis began his career in 1965 as an apprentice for The Rover Company. He eventually worked his way up through engineering roles into a position in Product Planning and Marketing, joining the PR team in 1985. Denis became the Director of Product Communications for The Rover Group, and he would remain in that position he left shortly before the BMW Group sold the company to Phoenix Venture Holdings in 2000.

After a two-year spell at Trafficmaster, Denis joined General Motors in 2002, initially in the role of PR and Marketing Manager for, the then embryonic, GM Daewoo UK. That role evolved into a multi-brand remit covering all GM brands sold in the UK. Denis was appointed Director, Communications for Vauxhall Motors in 2009 and received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Newspress Awards in March 2017.

Speaking on that occasion, Denis said: ‘I have had such a privileged career and have been able to see the world, building long-term relationships with some fantastic people along the way. I’ve launched many new cars and seen numerous crises come and go in my time, so I’m well equipped for whatever the industry may throw at me. Every minute has been enjoyable…’

A recent farewell party at a top London bar and restaurant saw many famous faces from the world of journalism and broadcasting show their affection, respect and pay tribute to this stalwart of automotive public affairs.

You can see Denis (briefly) in action during the 1990s documentary, When Rover Met BMW, in the lead up to the Rover 200 (R3) launch.

His own fleet of vehicles includes a Rover P6 2000, Rover 75 Club SE, Vanden Plas 1500 not to mention a brace of classic AEC buses – as you can imagine, he’s bound to have plenty to keep him occupied. Denis is a good friend of AROnline and regularly pops in for a read, he will certainly be contributing to the site in the coming months and years.

Best wishes Denis and enjoy your well-deserved retirement!

Not only does Denis run a trio of BL and Rover cars, but he also owns two classic AEC buses. Here, stands proudly in front of his AEC Regent with his AEC Reliance alongside.

Mike Humble

Upon leaving school, Mike was destined to work on the Railway but cars were his first love. An apprenticeship in a large family Ford dealer was his first forray into the dark and seedy world of the motor trade.

Moving on to Rover and then PSV / HGV, he has circumnavigated most departments of dealerships including parts, service and latterly - the showroom. Mike has owned all sorts of rubbish from Lada to Leyland and also holds both Heavy Goods & Public Service Vehicle licences, he buys & sells buses and coaches during the week. Mike runs his own automotive web site and writes for a number of motoring or commercial vehicle themed publications

3 Comments

  1. Lovely fella!

    Always interested in what’s going on with cars and projects he’s been involved with.

    What the Rover 200 launch clip doesn’t show is that even Denis couldn’t prepare for every eventuality – that was the night that Lady Di’s famous Panorama programme was aired, so all the Brit journos retired to the hotel bar asap and took very little interest in the car for the rest of the evening!

  2. I personally owe Denis a great debt of thanks for all the help he has given me for a number of articles I written over the years, some of which have been featured on AROnline. Even though he had left Rover back in early 2000, he is still very approachable and willing to tap into his recollections of products, places and people to help me with accuracy.

    Definitely always appreciated, Denis, and sorry each of my emails always turns into ‘twenty questions’!

  3. I’ve always thought he seems like a good one, but then I read above that he has a P6. Obviously a top bloke then.

    Happy retirement

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