Greece in the 1950s

Young Pemberton collared two odd Greeks on celluloid, during his forays into the capital during the days of rationing.    A 1950s American Buick Eight convertible  parked in Upper Regent Street in London bears a baffling, plain,  T 38  plate, unlike anything we know.   John  was certain it was Greek.

Was it a Thessaloniki Port tourist entry plate?

May 31, 2019   Yes – this transpired to be just that, and our Stoel albums provided another example from the same period – T 62, carried by a 1949-ish Hillman Minx.

Any ideas about this 'Greek'?

Any ideas about this ‘Greek’?                JP archive  

May 31, 2019   Yes – this transpired to be just that, and our Stoel albums provided another example from the same period – T 62, carried by a 1949-ish Hillman Minx.

(GR)(timp 14-54)_T 62_r_HillmanMinx.plKS(GR)(timp 14-54)_T 62_f_HillmanMinx.plKS

Well – there’s another series we had not known of!     Thessalonika Temporary Importation registration, free of duty.

 

Below:

A Morris Oxford MO was the choice of transport for this 1940’s-era British diplomat in Athens, seen on leave in UK.     Embassies were not coded in those times.

CD 277 on leave from Athens. in Britain, circa 1949-50.

CD 277 on leave from Athens. in Britain, circa 1949-50. Pemberton archive

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Below; Not many years later, in about 1958, the rare Greek diplomatic was photographed in Earls Court by VB.    Also on a Morris Oxford, but the later, Farina-designed 1960s version.

A Farina-designed Morris Oxford from Athens embassy, in about 1958. VB archive.

A Farina-designed Morris Oxford from GB Athens embassy, in about 1958.           VB archive.

The 56 on these plates gave the year of their first issue only.   56 continued to be issued until they were replaced in 1969 with similar (green) plates, but now showing ‘69‘.   This ran until about 2011, still marked ‘69‘!    So the date meant nothing.

The DS transliteration of the Greek dip. plates abbreviates ‘Diplomatikos Somos‘ or ‘Diplomatic Body‘.   Greeks are not keen to use Latin-based words (Corps), when they have their own, older language!

At last, an attractive new turquoise plate design has replaced the 1969 series:

The latest Greek CD.

The latest Greek CD.

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7 Responses to Greece in the 1950s

  1. smodriver says:

    Hello – the Morris Oxford MO ‘….277 CD’ on leave from Athens. in Britain, circa 1949-50 – is a rare car, being the only one exported to Anastase Papageorgopoulos in 1948 or 49 – LHD ( the sharp pointed corners to the bonnet line tell us it is June’48 – Aug’49

    • VERY interesting detail, SMOdriver! I am surprised by how many 1940s50s Morris Oxford MO models show up in overseas plate pictures. Also Phase One Vanguards. They must have been well-thought-of cars – and their manufacturers must have had plenty of steel allocated to them, to enable them to make so many. There were no aluminium panels in an MO, as there were in many other post-war British cars, built by factories which could not obtain enough steel.
      Bizarre to reflect that those erstwhile famous brands now don’t exist……

      • richardpd says:

        The Phase 1 Standard Vanguards were an attempt at a “world car” & Standard managed to get them licence built in a few countries as well as exported from the UK.

        I don’t know as much about the Morris Oxford MO, but maybe many Brits working abroad managed to get one on the “buy for export” scheme.

        I know the later Oxfords were licence built in India until quite recently.

  2. Bill says:

    The first photo (T38) is not a greek car.

    • Can we be sure it isn’t a customs plate from Thessaloniki, a popular port of entry? In those times (40’s – 80’s), the temporary importation plates illustrating a serial given by Greek Customs, seem to have been made up on a ad hoc basis by someone near the port – there were no two the same!

  3. Interesting article, the Chevrolet Vitara is an import from Venezuela and has a dealer sticker on the back from Caracas

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