I noticed that the '70 Raleigh Superbe I just acquired doesn't have the white area on the rear fender I've always seen on other Raleighs. Does this mean it was built somewhere other than Great Britain?
A very simple answer. During the Second World War (1939-45) there was a complete "Blackout" every night - We were under bombing from the Germans - Thus all cycles had a white patch on the rear mudguard for safety reasons. (In fact cars also had white patches on the mudguards ) Thus your "new" cycle was probably manufactured in the Nineteen Thirties (or earlier ) No cycles were made during the war as there was a greater use for steel !!!!
I knew the origin of the white fender, but apparently its application isn't as simple as you suggest. My wife's 1970 Raleigh Superbe doesn't have it (I've heard of factories having backlogs, but I don't think this bike was built before WWII), but her sister and brother-in-law have a pair of 1972 Sport models that do have it. That's why I suspected different countries of manufacture may be the reason.
If you read Andy Hadland's history of Raleigh and some of the other Raleigh history that I posted to the heron headlamp bracket thread, you will see that Raleigh produced some bikes in Ireland, as well as in Nottingham, plus maybe at other facilities around the UK.
I went back and re-read that article, but I couldn't find when that Irish facility was in operation. I know my '70 Superbe couldn't have been built in Canada; that plant didn't open until 1972. I tried to make out the serial number on the seat post tube, but the paint is so thickly applied it obscures it.
It really isn't that important, just an interesting tangent. I always liked the white patch -- it was one of the things that announced 'Made in England'. This one looks a bit funny to me without it; like a Rolls without the Flying Lady on the radiator shell.