Muscat and Oman, 1960s.

MUSCAT & OMAN

The earliest pictures of plated cars in Oman are from the 1960s, when there were hardly any vehicles or roads in the sultanate.   Perhaps this is why the few pictures collected are on cross-country vehicles, particularly Land Rover.

Our former President  Bernt Larsson has fielded this magnificent shot from his library.   It’s almost like a publicity picture for the Land Rover catalogue!

Muscat 464 photographed in Oman in the early 1960s and kept safe in Bernt's album for 50 years until April 2013, when he gave this exhibition!   Bernt Larsson archive.

Muscat 464 photographed in Oman in the early 1960s and kept safe in Bernt’s album for 50 years until April 2013, when he gave us this exhibition!            Bernt Larsson archive.

Prodded by Bernt’s senior-team display, the percussive Mr. James Fox, of those United States, hurried to counter him with this very unusual DIE-CAST Omani plate of the period (they being simply painted tin sheet as a rule).   This plate is reminiscent of the Kuwait plates of the period, which were almost all heavy, cast  metal, like this (and also silver on red)

diecast alloy MUSCAT 337, a classic plate from the Jim Fox cornucopia.

Diecast-alloy 337 MUSCAT, a classic plate from the Jim Fox cornucopia.

EU38 also has an exemplar of the period, which had the additional curiosity of an out-of-state plate to translate the arabic-only Muscat/Oman registration.

Muscat 667 was captured in Fulham, London, in Spring, 1965, having been imported to Britain, and given a dedicated* used-import re-registration, DYU 24 C. Brumby archive

Muscat 667 was captured in Fulham, London, in Spring, 1965, having been imported used to Britain, and it was given a dedicated* used-import re-registration, DYU 24 C.                                   Brumby archive 1965

 

DYU 24 C – Readers may be surprised by the evidence of sunshine in this photograph  and wonder if the image may have been put through Photoshop.     I can attest that this WAS taken in England – though, of course, long before global warming was an issue!

On the taxi-rank in Kabul, in September 1968, the very same Land Rover was to be seen waiting for customers!    Some coincidence…..    The owner must have been just  ahead of me on the overland  route from Britain……     The British plates, DYU 24 C, which had been painted on originally, were still in evidence in Afghanistan.

*Most London registrations between 10 and 99 were kept for registering used imports of all types, probably from the 1940s to the late 1960s.

Kabul Taxi 6469 which had driven from Oman via London to Kabul to become Kabul's toughest taxi.    Brumby archive.

Kabul Taxi 6469 which had driven from Oman via London to Kabul to become Kabul’s toughest taxi.    I think the driver may now be the current President and the tree has fallen without his support..           Brumby archive.

Brumby archive

The same Land Rover model I was attempting to drive to Australia, left England in 1965 with its front wings emblazoned with a few of my more colourful plates, including a green Cameroun diplomatic,a red Kuwaiti cast-alloy and a blue Hungarian DT diplomatic.   As we were lifted off the ferry at The Hook of Holland, Netherlands Customs soon put a stop to that, though I was allowed to keep the AUS oval. Here it is in 1965 Kandahar with the very kindly mayor and his official car, an International Scout 4wd, ‘Official’ plate no. 1.         Brumby archive

The above series was replaced by simple pressed plates on to soft alloy sheet, in white on black, about 1973.   Later the colours changed to black on yellow.
The above red series was replaced by simple pressed plates on to soft alloy sheet, in white on black, about 1973. Years later the colours changed to black on yellow.      VB plate

810 - the yellow variant.

810 – the yellow variant.      Brumby plate

The yellow plate begs the question:  why the low number, if yellow came after black?   Cedric, please??

Cedric Sabine has responded with the info that the black plates were for commerical vehicles, the yellow for private use.

 

Another private vehicle issue from the 1970s, caprured by EU9, Terry Gray.

Another private vehicle issue from the 1970s, captured by EU9, Terry Gray.

 

 

A final shot we cannot leave out of an Oman Posting:

Thought to be a royal household plate of some sort, the shot was taken by non-member André Mas in a 2010 visit to the country.

Thought to be a royal household plate of some sort, the shot was taken by non-member André Mas in a 2010 visit to the country.

That’s all from Oman for now…….

 

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11 Responses to Muscat and Oman, 1960s.

  1. John Harrison says:

    Yes, Vic, I am reading this and am rather surpised that you took a photo of a C-suffix, i.e. 1965, Land Rover in 1964. I think I’ve spotted your deliberate mistake!

    Regards

    John

  2. Douglas Fox says:

    Yes, I’m reading it too – and enjoying! Keep up the engrossing content. Rgds, Douglas

  3. Oh-well done JH! I’d have checked the date of C ‘ issue if I had been at home, and I vacillated over which year to put. There ‘s no pulling the wool over some members’ eyes!!!!!!! And accuracy is all. I suppose!

  4. pauldeeley says:

    Yes, I am reading all these, and they will be excellent pieces to go in the newsletter, too.

  5. David Wilson says:

    I’m reading too, and all posts are enjoyed and appreciated, all the more so that I am currently in Poland and far from home.
    All the best, and keep it up.

  6. Jeff Lee says:

    I read it. Enjoyed it, and learned from it!
    Thanks,
    Jeff Lee 377

  7. thanks chaps – appreciated

  8. Cedric says:

    Vic,
    The 70s Oman black plates were for commercially used vehicles and the yellow for privately used.
    Cheers
    Cedric

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