Drivers who do not find the prospect of a staycation in sunny Britannia will have to forgo their GB stickers or magnets for an updated ‘UK’ version if they wish to travel through Europe in future. The United Nations announced that the previous iteration of Great Britain’s initials will be invalid from September 28th. They said that they had received ‘a notification stating that the United Kingdom is changing the distinguishing sign that it had previously selected for display in international traffic on vehicles registered in the United Kingdom from ‘GB’ to ‘UK’.
There has been no official justification given for the change. Though it has been widely speculated that it is about reflecting solidarity for Northern Ireland post-Brexit, as ‘GB’ excludes NI, whereas ‘UK’ does not. A similar change was revealed earlier this year, when Grant Shapps declared that drivers would be able to drive through Europe without one of the previously discussed magnets if their car is fitted with a new registration plate which displays a Union Flag and GB sign.
As far as I am aware, there has been no out-cry in protest of this, let’s face it, minor change in Newbury, but traditionalists such as a few Tory MPs and Edmund King, head of the AA, expressed disappointment in regard to the altering of our nation’s motoring heritage.
You will be happy to know, however, that driving instructors have not begun to follow suit and that the iconic ‘L’ and ‘P’ plates are remaining unchanged for the time being.