Kent Invicta

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Kent Invicta is a defunct rugby league team that were based in Maidstone, Kent and later Southend in Essex.

History[edit]

Kent Invicta RLFC[edit]

Kent Invicta RLFC were formed by local businessman, Paul Faires, who had been smitten by the sport whilst watching games at Fulham. Faires was backed in the enterprise by Jim Thompson, Maidstone United FC's chairman. They were admitted to the Rugby League on 6 April 1983 and entered the Second Division. The moniker "Invicta" (unvanquished) being the motto of Kent. The club colours consisted of a black shirt with an amber chevron, black shorts and black socks. They played their first game at London Road, Maidstone, a ground they shared with Maidstone United and a greyhound company.

Their coach was Bill Goodwin. The players were a mixture of southerners and players from the North of England with a few players from Australasia including Mark Elia. Their first game was against Cardiff City Blue Dragons, they lost 31-12 before a crowd of 1,815. Unfortunately, attendance for Invicta’s second home match against Doncaster slumped to 511, and only two other games that season topped four figures. The record attendance was 2,107 against St. Helens on 6 November 1983, by which time the club was bankrupt and the reins were taken over by Jim Thompson, the chairman of the soccer club. The last game at Maidstone was on 12 May 1984 against Rochdale Hornets, which they won 32-12 before 412 spectators. Problems with ground sharing and wear of the soccer pitch resulted in the club having to move away from London Road. Despite their financial problems, Kent competed well throughout the season, and they won their final game on 12th May 1984 against Rochdale Hornets, 32-12. They finished ninth out of 18 teams with an equal number of wins and losses (17 each).

Southend Invicta RLFC[edit]

Southend United football club then approached Invicta and in late 1984 the team became Southend Invicta, and they started playing games at the Roots Hall Stadium. The club colours were white shirts with a blue V, white shorts and white socks. Their season was unremarkable, and after the final home game against Huddersfield where there were a mere 85 fans, the club director Matt Wheatcroft admitted the club was in an extremely precarious position. Invicta were struck from the 1985-86 fixtures by the Rugby Football League only days before the commencement of the new season because they were considered not to have formed a team. They went into liquidation soon afterwards.

External links[edit]