July 20, 2018


(NL) KM-73-20  —  Dutch Sint Maarten has a few Royal Netherlands Navy vehicles in service.    This pick-up/ute/bakke was seen by Philipsburg dock in 2016.     We assume the military plates which go abroad are not specially coded.   (Koninklijke Marine)                                                  Brumby archive.



(F)  224 WAL 24  —  Also at the dockside  there but destined for FRENCH St. Martin was a heavy truck using French temporary exit plates from the 1990s(?)

(F)  224 WAL 24


(PAK) PALITANA 1  —  Prince Shiv of Palitana was a lively socialite in the London scene in 1955.       His new, scarlet Ford Thunderbird was photographed by the Daily Mail newspaper and three nascent plate-spotters jumped on a train from the English midlands, to search for the subject of this photo.      And we found it, in Berkeley Square!

Neither Terry Gray, Ivan Thornley nor the Blog  had a camera in those times and in the intervening 63 years, notebooks lost, we have wondered if we had dreamed it all, as we had no evidence – until a modern web search found the very shot.

Silver-on-red plates, as was the way with the Indian (and later, Pakistani) royal households’ plate style.



(GH)  GR 1000 E  —  Guy Lewis, stringer for the Blog ,spent a year in Nigeria in 2017 masquerading as an international banking plenipotentiary, and captured this Jaguar E-Type which had made its way over from Ghana – a rare sight in either country, one would think.

There was never anywhere to mount a front plate on an E-Type, so some enlightened countries permitted an adhesive Fablon format, which didn’t disfigure the aesthetics of that beautiful car.     Ghana seems to have become such a kindly place.

GR 1000 E

G 1000 E


(USA)  T-687  ==  Jim Fox Eu 0095 is extending his deep historical researches in to US state and federal government-issued plates           (Fox archive)

Jim – would you care to fill us in with the background of this very unusual issue?     (Responses below.)

US/FWA   T-687



This looks suspiciously like Karel Stoel’s 1940s bedroom and perhaps his mother wondering how best to tidy it up!

Later the whole collection went on public display at a small transport museum in Holland.    In the 1960s, the museum had to close BUT the plates were, we believe, saved in the nick of time.    Who has the story?

STOEL  ==  Many of these classic, obsolete plates have found their way in to modern collections, fortunately.    If YOU have one or more, why not send in the current picture, for us all to share your pleasure?    (What’s the R/I X 5154???)


BN 1627  ==  When this picture first came to light in the Stoel albums which were acquired from careful long-term storage by Europlate in 2016, we defined it as a Libyan Benghazi plate of a previously unrecorded format.      Later, we came to recognise it as an Anglo-Egyptian Sudan issue from the Blue Nile registration office.        Wonders will never cease!

Fortunately, THESE wonders didn’t come singly.     Another four evocative shots from Sudan, pre-independence.

(ET)  BN 1089  —  Blue Nile province on a Morris Minor (sidevalve) convertible, suspected 1949, is shot in London.

K 4206 —  Khartoum, Sudan 1920s-58 series.

c.1947 Vauxhall HIX-type 12hp


(ET)  E 1100  —  and this 1950s Morris-Commercial LD5 minibus was registered in Equatoria Province of Anglo-Egyptian Sudan.========================

(ET)  K.35  —  Hard to believe, but this enamelled 1920s Khartoum Dealer plate survives in a collection somewhere………


Khartoum 4KH 22477  —  And, though this is predominantly a Historic plate site, as the Blog got a shot of a current-issue  Sudani in Ethiopia in 2017, we might as well display it.     It’s a poor shot, because I was being arrested during the filming – apparently tourists cannot take pictures in Addis Ababa…..



For more plate photos, be sure to visit The Europlate Historic Archive:

TEHA website

West Africa – Gold Coast/Ghana

February 17, 2013

Reg Wilson, one of the earliest British collectors, lived near the great dock city of  Liverpool, where the ships discharged many a motorcar returning after duties abroad.     This Gold Coast (West Africa-Coast) (?  Standard Vanguard was photographed by Reg on 1st. August 1965.

CP 7045 was from Central Region (Cape Coast).  (Reg Wilson archive)

CP 7045 was from Central Region (Cape Coast). (Reg Wilson archive)

Below is a Ford Zephyr Six,  made in 1955, seen in London years later, registered on the 1955-6 special (tax-free)  Home Delivery Export Scheme plates PLO 357 with which it was originally delivered in Britain, prior to being shipped out to the Gold Coast.     After its period of use there, and returning to UK, it changed its African plates back to its original British export plates, but happily, left the rare WAC international oval (used 1932-57) firmly bolted to the body,  for our delectation.


Below:   AR-1274 is a 1940 issue from Accra, photographed at the Barcelona Placamundi conference members’ displays.


WR 290 was coded for the Western Region (Sekondi) and photographed when it returned to Liverpool on June 26th. 1960.     Looks like a Morris Minor….   Reg Wilson archive


SG 1267 – A London VB sighting in 1960 was this Fiat 2100 bearing the special SG series plate which was issued to celebrate The Gold Coast’s independence from Britain in 1959.   The Ghana international oval GH was introduced shortly after independence.   The prefix SG  was believed to abbreviate Self-Government and to be a form of temporarily-issued treasured plate.   Vic Brumby archive



GT = Greater Accra (Tema) and the  P is for 1998 first registration.

Finally, a current Ghanaian vehicle, seen in Italy, in 2003.   Brumby archive

GT 8181 P    A current Ghanaian vehicle, seen in Italy, in 2003. Brumby archive


Ghana mystery SG

October 13, 2011

For the first time since I took this photo in London in the 1960s, I have checked for the Ghanaian area code SG in RPWO and found no entry!   –

Later:    1959 special issue to celebrate Self-Government.)

Anyone know what the SG code might have indicated, please?     On the big  Fiat 2100 of the period.     (Answer given below by Alex Kafka, under Comments.)

SG 1267 Ghana plate from the early 1960s.   Brumby archive