At the end of World War II, the Allies were faced with the daunting task of administering their respective Occupation Zones. To assist in this task, a number of Transport units were formed from prisoners of war. They were called 'Dienstgruppen' (DGs). Initially, the personnel in these units wore their German Army uniforms, but in July 1947 these were replaced by a dark-brown battledress. Later in that year, a redesignation to the German Civilian Labour Organisation (GCLO) took place.
The units were used on practically any task, but in the main supported major BAOR exercises, using a wide variety of American, ex-Germany Army, Canadian and British Army vehicles. Amongst the many undertakings of this difficult period was the Berlin Airlift. GCLO Transport Units provided the vital links between supply depots, railheads and the airfields. The enthusiasm with which the GCLO workers supported the West German end of the Airlift operation is something which all who witnessed it will never forget.
In October 1950, a further reorganisation was undertaken, and retitling to the German Service Organisation (GSO) took place. At the same time the number of groups was gradually reduced, mainly by amalgamation. In 1957 the GSO Transport Units became Mobile Civilian Transport Groups (MCTGs), taking the same numbers as their predecessors.
The next few years saw a significant change of emphasis in the role of the MCTGs. From being largely operational transport in support of the RASC in the field, they took over the buses established for school children, family administration and the newly introduced air trooping. The RCT Freight Service, which started in BAOR in the late 1960s, was operated to a large extent by MCTG vehicles and drivers.
The survivors of an almost non-stop round of reviews, cuts, restrictions, streamlining and financial stringency, the MCTGs have earned an almost Darwinian reputation for evolving and adapting to change. Over the entire period that they have served the British Army in Germany, these units have built up a tradition of loyal service and good vehicle husbandry, which was carefully cherished and much admired.
603 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Hohne
604 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Dortmund
605 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Münster
606 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Mönchengladbach
607 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Paderborn
608 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Mönchengladbach
626 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Düsseldorf
627 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Minden
629 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Osnabrück
632 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Lohne
633 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Celle
636 Mobile Civilian Transport Group RCT - Werl