x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Petrol stop on a journey back in time

Time frame This week's image was taken in the 1960s by the late Gertrude Dyck, who worked as a midwife at the Oasis Hospital in Al Ain for 38 years from 1962.

Image of a petrol station in Al Ain taken by a midwife in 1962.
Image of a petrol station in Al Ain taken by a midwife in 1962.

This week's image was taken in the 1960s by the late Gertrude Dyck, who worked as a midwife at the Oasis Hospital in Al Ain for 38 years from 1962. The picture is not captioned, but contains several clues about its date and location. Hanging from the flagpole, and attached to the red pick-up truck, is the flag of Abu Dhabi, now mostly replaced by the UAE flag after unification in 1971. The vehicle is a Dodge Sweptline, a model made between 1961 and 1971. Old BP hands will recall that BP had two petrol stations in Al Ain: one on the High Street, the other by Oasis Hospital. The company was replaced by the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, which was created in 1971, although BP continued to manage Adnoc petrol stations for many years. As for the building going up behind the petrol station - according to the official history, Oasis Hospital opened a number of new units in the early 1970s and it could be some of these being built. Gertrude Dyck died in Canada last October at 75. Known as Doctura Latifa, meaning "mercy", it is estimated she assisted in the birth of 90,000 babies, including members of the Abu Dhabi Royal Family.

Time frame is a new series that opens a window into the nation's past. Each week it will feature an image from the archives of institutions and private collections. Readers are also invited to contribute and can submit photographs to yourpics@thenational.ae