This model of a blue Morris Minor van was produced by the Oxford Die-Cast company in 2008 to celebrate the 120th Anniversary of ‘The Daily Echo’. The text on the door reads ‘120 YEARS Daily Echo’, surrounded by the words ‘Bringing you the news across Hampshire’. The model was for sale on Oxford’s website at £4.95, but has sold out.
Oxford Die-Cast Ltd of Swansea was launched in 1993 making detailed die-cast models for the collector, gift and promotional markets. Lledo, which had been a leader in this field, became bankrupt in 1999, with name and manufacturing transferred to Corgi, before being absorbed into Corgi Classics. The demise of Lledo left Oxford Die-Cast as the leading producer of a huge range of models including cars, vans, lorries, buses, fire engines, ambulances, road rollers, steam engines and aeroplanes. Originally made in the UK, manufacturing was transferred to China in 2000. Oxford runs a collectors’ club, which supplies members with catalogues, updates on new releases and an exclusive annual gift vehicle.
Many models are sold in blister packs, but some, including the one considered here, were sold with a stand and a harder plastic cover, from which the cardboard containing the product information could be removed, making it suitable for display purposes. These were labelled Oxford Automobile Company. (see below.)
The Southern Daily Echo is a Southampton based newspaper, first printed in 1888 to cover the county of Hampshire. It was initially a daily paper, changing to an evening paper in 1958, consequently changing its name to The Evening Echo, before reverting to The Daily Echo in 1994. At one time there were six editions a day, but this was restricted to just one in 2006. The website was initiated in 1998. Local sister publications include the Hampshire Chronicle, Basingstoke Gazette, Romsey Advertiser and Bournemouth Daily Echo.