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

Spotting notes from 1956/58 (No.2)

June 13, 2013

The second and third tranches of John Pemberton’s plate records cover the years 1956 Aug. to 1958 Aug.    Many extra details have been added to John’s basic entries of these selected from about 5,000 total entries for those years – but if  any reader can add details which are not yet showing, or correct errors, that will help to improve the science!     Even plate colours would be of interest in some cases.    Please just  ‘Comment’  below.

The selections were made from the thousands noted,  based on rarity at the time, interesting numbers, or unusual vehicles, but are otherwise arbitrary.      As European plates were predominant in John’s sightings, only odd examples and unusual series have been selected for these sheets.       We hope you will enjoy delving into these pages of history!

Copy these links in to your browser to view.    (Printable)


In this 1956-58 batch of  plates, two of the records which JP notes were also seen by EU38  and captured on film – quite a coincidence, you may agree.    Here are those common sightings:

Buick Eight in London during 1958, also noted by member Pemberton.   Brumby archive

55559 – Lebanese Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight in London during June 1958, was also noted by member Pemberton in July 1958.                    Brumby archive

When I saw this, I had to visit the library to find out where 'Aruba' was to be found on an atlas!.    Some weeks after seeing the Ford 100E Anglia at Hyde Park Corner, I saw VXD 44 parked in Fulham from the top of my RT double-decker.     Swiftly dismounting, I hunted the owner, in the sure belief it was the Aruban, recently re-registered in Britain.   It was, and the amused owner handed me one of his plates, which I still value among the most unusual plates in my collection.

When I saw A-6147  passing me, I was flummoxed.     I had to visit the library to find out where ‘Aruba’ was to be found on an atlas!   Some weeks after seeing it on the grey Ford 100E Anglia at Hyde Park Corner, I saw, from the top deck of my passing double-decker, an identical car bearing shiny, brand-new VXD 44 British plates, parked in Fulham.    Swiftly dismounting, I hunted the owner within nearby houses, in the sure belief it was the Aruban car, recently re-registered in Britain.   It  WAS – the previous week – and the amused owner handed me one of his Netherlands Antilles plates, which I still value among the most unusual plates in my collection.     Sadly, no picture ‘on the car’.       Brumby archive.

On the same day A-6147 was first sighted, I made another ‘country-catch’ on Ford Consul Mk.1 A 4167, which carried a cast-alloy black ET oval with ‘Anglo-Egyptian Sudan‘  printed round the perimeter.   (How bizarre that the registration was an anagram of the Aruban Ford! )    John Pemberton also saw this vehicle on another day visiting London, but neither of us got photos, unfortunately – particularly as the ‘A’ registration format did not match what I know of Sudan plates of the period.   Any thoughts?

There were to be several more joint sightings as the years progressed, which we will share with you as the Pages proceed…….