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Road Haulage Archive #7-"Red Van....Green Van"

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Road Haulage Archive

Issue #7 - "Red Van...Green Van"

Subtitled “A pictorial history of the development of the Post Office vehicle fleet” this tells the story from the earliest days up to the 1970s. It also covers the whole range – and what a range it was; the GPO fleet was about much more than mail and telephone vans! Other aspects include parcel vans, telegraph pole erectors, supplies vans and ‘Postal Engineering’ and there’s also a look at vehicles used by the Radio Interference and TV Detector departments. There’s also a super section covering the GPO’s Centralised Repair Depots – where vans were fully refurbished/rebuilt, along with a short section on preserved ex-GPO vehicles.   

For your reviewer however, one of the most interesting aspects is the coverage of ‘unusual’ Post Office vehicles such as cherry pickers and cable-layers, and the various vehicles which were trialled for Post Office use but never widely taken up; we are all familiar with Post Office Minor vans, but Minis, Anglias and even Reliant Supervans were also used/trialled as alternatives, and the Commer Walkthru was tested as a possible alternative to the Morris 360cu ft for parcel work. One gets the impression – rightly or wrongly – that in the 1960s the Post Office was keen – almost to the point of desperation ­- to find a way of ending its pretty-much total dependency on BMC products, but couldn’t actually find anything that did the job so well.  

A great read – and not just for Post Office enthusiasts.

Review by Peter Simpson, Classic & Vintage Commercials Magazine Editor

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