Mr Boyle, Newry

I would certainly use British Car Registrations again.  You gave an excellent service from start to finish, as when I used you in the past.  I could not have asked for better, it was terrific, a super experience …

Posted in What Our Customers Say

Mr Parton, Walsall

Thank you to British Car Registrations for a very good service in the recent purchase of our new registration number J14 LTP. The lady I dealt with was very enthusiastic and extremely helpful and I was very satisfied overall.

Posted in What Our Customers Say

New Releases

We are happy to accept advance orders for registrations that are being released in advance of new car registrations coming into being; it is a service we have been successfully providing to our very satisfied clients for many years.  Whilst we cannot absolutely guarantee success every time it is true to say that we have very rarely failed to acquire a specific registration for a client who has placed an order prior to the release date (and, of course, we offer a full refund if we should be unsuccessful).  For a price on a currently un-released registration please call our sales team on 0121 353 3333.


Private Number Plates Investment Opportunities



Posted in News

Replacement Driving Licence

You must replace your Photocard Driving Licence if it is lost, stolen or defaced. You can do this in three ways – by phone, online or by post. Remember, you no longer needed the paper counterpart of the driving licence from 8 June 2015.


If none of your details have changed, this can be replaced over the telephone. A fee of £20 will be applicable and will be paid by credit or debit card. Call DVLA on 0300 790 6801 (Monday to Friday 8.00am to 7.00pm; Saturday 8.00am to 2.00pm).


Visit and follow the online steps to receive a replacement.


If your licence has been lost, stolen or the details have been changed, you will need to complete a D1 Application for a Driving Licence form. You can get this from the Post Office.

When you send the form, please ensure you include all the correct documents and send them, along with the fee of £20 to DVLA, Swansea, SA99 1AB.

Renewing a Photo on a Photocard Licence

You are able to renew your photo on your photocard driving licence at anytime. Also, it is also worth remembering that a photo on a photocard driving licence has an expiry date. The expiry date can be found on the front of the licence. You will be required to update your photo before the expiry date passes.

You can learn more about renewing the photo on your licence and apply online via DVLA’s website.

Finding Your Previous Lost Licence

If you find a licence which you had replaced, return the latest one back to the DVLA and explain what happened.

Receiving your New Licence

It is advised to wait 3 weeks before contacting the DVLA regarding your licence.

Driving without the Physical Licence

It is ok to drive/ride your vehicle if you are waiting for a new licence to arrive. The following conditions are acceptable:

  • Not disqualified from driving
  • Not been – or will be – refused a licence for medical reasons

Last updated October 2017.


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Posted in FAQ's

Private Plates for Beginners

A handy guide when you don’t know where to start.


A good starting point would be price.

If you’re looking for a relatively cheap private plate, we would suggest searching for your initials within the Prefix number plates. Remember, you can’t add a reg number to your vehicle if it makes it appear newer than it is. Our Prefix DVLA private plate numbers will filter out the unsuitable ones based on the age of the vehicle.

Our website is designed to give you a number of options, and if you are on a budget, we offer a range of Finance Plans to ensure you’re really happy with the numberplate you choose. At British Car Registrations, we treat our customers in the same way, regardless of how much they’re spending. This is where we price ourselves on excellent customer service and value.

Some of the cheapest private plates are number plates originally issued in Northern Ireland, which start from £59 online. Please see our Bargain Basement next to the search box at the top of the home page.

If you have slightly more to spend, then use our database to search for names, initials, numbers represented as Cherished Plates – usually in a format which has no year indicator.

Start your Search

Start your search for your private registration with us. You can either search online or call our team of friendly experts who will guide you through the process. You can also do both! To put your mind at rest, we have more than 30 years experience within the DVLA private number plates industry, we were awarded the coveted ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 9002, which adds another stamp of authority onto our business.

View our range of private, personalised, cherished number plates online. Have a play with the search function and see what comes up!

Want to sell your number plate?

If you’ve already got a private registration and you’re not sure on its value, then try our free no obligation facility to enquire (see SELL at the top of the home page). Should you decide that you definitely do wish to sell it, we will handle the whole process for you, complete with handling all documents to and from the DVLA. To receive a number plate valuation, it only takes a few minutes. We can also take your valuations details over the telephone; call us on 0121 355 6777. If you would  like us to sell it for you, we have opportunities to advertise your personalised car registration plate on our website, within our Showroom and within the national papers. Why not give someone else the joy of having your plate?

Posted in FAQ's

Private Plate Ideas

So, you’ve tried searching for your name, initials or special numbers, but you still can’t find your ideal private plate. What do you do? Give up? No, you let British Car Registrations guide you to alternative options you may not have thought about… after all, we have 30 years experience in the personalised registrations business.

We’ve collected some ideas of how you can choose your perfect number plate. Remember, all private registrations have to include at least one number – this means numbers will often be used to represent letters, as long as the DVLA number plate format is followed, this can be very handy when making your own personalised plate.

Autonumerology – the art of exchanging numbers for letters on plates. The table below explains this in more detail…

Cool, cheap private number plate ideas

Now we have the legal and format knowledge, lets move into the cool bit… vehicle registration ideas…

1) Your Name.

This is the most common type of private plate, but also the most coveted. Make a statement by having your name on a personalised reg.

As numbers can be used to represent letters, using the table above you can make first names or surnames… i.e. P3 TER, K4 REN and many more. Be mindful that some of the best plates have already been bought and these are difficult to find to buy. Call us on 0121 353 3333 and we can help you with searching for a full name plate and can even contact the current owner on your behalf should they have it up for sale.

2) Your Initials.

If you don’t like the idea of your full name being displayed on a number plate, why not just add your initials? By doing this, you also have the opportunity to hide the age of the vehicle and add a touch of elegance to the vehicle.

For example, try the format B1 BCR as a prefix option, or even 1 BCR and see what comes up for your special number and initials.

3) Your Profession or Company.

Do you love your job or own your own business? A personalised registration can really make your car or company van stand out… for example, LOO for a Plumber or PUB for a Landlord. We also have a range of DOC or LAW private plates for all you Doctors’ and Lawyers’.

4) Hobbies.

Do you have a hobby? This is another great way to personalise your vehicle, and also tell the rest of the world. Support a specific football team? You can now have a football-themed private reg to match your fan tattoo.

5) Match Your Personality!

Are you B16?, BO55y?HOT? We have over 50 million private plates to choose from, find one to match your personality.

6) Your Car Make/Model.

M3, A6, BMW, MER, JAG, VW, FRR and so on. Use your imagination and find a combination to suit the type of car or vehicle which will be accessorised with the new private plate.

7) Your Age, Birthday or Birth Year.

Try some searches based on the idea above… that way your personalised reg would contain some special numbers rather than a number which has no meaning to you.

If you’re thinking about getting a private reg as a milestone birthday present, incorporate 18/21/40 into the search box and see what you can find.

8) V6, V8, V12.

This can represent vehicle engine size, using this version followed by your initials doesn’t just show off the engine size, but also hides the private plate.

9) MR (M2)

Another popular, classy plate and also very cheap to find. Take a look at our MR private reg plates and see if you can find one with your name or initials.

10) MISS (M155)

M155 plates = MISS… simple. Take a look at the M155 private plates online.

11) MS (M5)

Whether you want to hide your marital status or not, this version allows you to leave another space free to add another letter or extra number. View our range of M5 private plates.

12) HI (H1)

Love saying HI to other road-users? Keep calm, put it on a plate.

13) F1.

Any F1 Fans or is your car just fast? DVLA released the F reg in 2008, so there are still a few around to buy. View our range of F-reg plates.

14) JUST (JU57)

We’ve seen some great JU57 private plates over the years, such as JU57 WED on a wedding car, JU57 JOE, JU57 VXR, JU57 MAX etc. Use your creativity and find your best plate.

15) HIS (H15)

This speaks for itself, H15 can be used at the start of a plate, followed by 3 letters, e.g. H15 BMW, H15 JAG etc.

16) VIP (V1 P**)

You have to be careful with this kind  of private number plate as you could be pulled up for illegal spacing. However, it will need to be displayed as ‘V1 P**’. See what options we have available online for these personalised plates.

17) Phonetics.

Phonetics are often underused but can be a great way to get your name on a personalised car reg. Simply put, spell the name on the plate as it sounds. For example Hugo, which is a 4 letter name can be hard to accommodate on a number plate, however, using phonetics we could have the plate H3 WGO.

18) Seasonal.

Do you live for a specific event or a love a particular season? See what you can come up with using the search function. In the meantime, look at these Halloween and Summer themed number plates.

19) Animals.

Are you a…CAT Lover, DOG Lover or just mad for PONY’s?

We also have a fantastic UNICORN plates!

20) Naughty Plates.

The name says it all, view our selection of Naughty Number Plates.

So there you have it, some ideas for personalised number plates!

Always remember that you can call us at any stage of the browsing and buying process. British Car Registrations have 30 years experience within the personalised registrations and private plate industry and are happy to help. Call us on 0121 353 3333 or if you’ve found what you’re looking for online, just follow the simple buying process.



Posted in News

Football Number Plates

Football car registrations are becoming increasingly popular – they are amongst those which are frequently searched on our website. So we’ve compiled a list of all the popular private number plates so you can access them quickly.

Turn your car into the ultimate football trophy by selecting from the list below, or do a private plate search and see what the results are.

We have over 50 million plates to choose from so give it a try and find your perfect sporting number plate today.




At British Car Registrations, we offer price-matching on selected DVLA number plates. We also offer a 7 day transfer guarantee and have a number of finance plans to make purchases much more affordable.

Struggling with a reg transfer? Don’t worry, we can sort all this for you. Give our team of experts a call 0121 353 3333 and we will be able to handle the process for you.

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Posted in News

Glossary of Terms

The car registrations glossary below defines the words and phrases you will come across when buying or selling a private number plate.  If you have any further questions, give us a call on 0121 353 3333 and we will be happy to help.


Black and White Style Plates

Vehicles first registered before 1st January 1975 are entitled to display the older black and white style number plates (but vehicles first registered after this date may not). Remember that you may NOT fix plates to your vehicle displaying a registration mark that is not registered to it so you must wait for official confirmation. Only Vehicles registered with historic tax class are allowed to display the black and silver number plates.


Cherished Number

This is a DVLA term used to describe what some may term a personalised registration mark, private plate, personal number plate etc.

Current or New Style Registration Plate

A type of car registration format. This was issued by the DVLA to be used from year 2001 onwards. The style format is two letters, followed by two numbers and ends in three letters.

The numbers represent the year the car was released and these change every six months on March 1st and September 1st. Example: AA52 BCD.


Dateless Registration

A dateless registration does not contain a date/year identifier. This means it can be transferred to any vehicle, regardless of the age.

DfT, Department for Transport

This is the Parent Government Department responsible for the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) as well as all “transport” related matters.


In private number plate terminology, the “Donor” is the person who supplies the registration. They will need to authorise the transfer of the registration mark to the person who will next own the registration in question – this person is known as the “Recipient”.

When two parties are involved in the transfer of a registration number, the DONOR is the person who is selling the registration number and the DONOR Vehicle is the vehicle that the registration number is coming from.  The RECIPIENT is the person who is receiving the new registration mark and their vehicle is known as the RECEIVING vehicle.

DOT, Department of Transport

Department of Transport was the name, from 1981 until 1997, of the government department now called the Department for Transport.


DVLA stands for Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency. DVLA is a Government Agency with responsibility for maintaining driver and vehicle records and enforcement of breaches of their regulations. The DVLA collects Vehicle Excise Duty – Road Tax.

DVLA issues new car registration numbers and carries out the administrative and regulation of vehicle registrations and number plates, including private plates.


Legally Spaced

Number plates must represent the car registration number and follow the correct spacing requirements as laid down by the DVLA. Numbers must not be made to look like letters or vice versa. Also, number plate fixing bolts should not be used to block or enhance parts of the number plate. Vehicles which do not follow the private plate regulations will fail their MOT. The Police can also issue fixed penalties for illegally displayed private number plates.


New Release

A periodic issue of new registrations by DVLA. New releases currently occur twice a year.


Often seen on the Retention Document, the “Nominee name” will be the same as the registered keeper of the vehicle as it appeared on the V5c registration document.


Personalised Registrations

A Personalised Registration is a term used to describe a registration number which has been bought. It usually identifies the owner or vehicle by name, initials, special numbers or nickname.  DVLA’s term is “cherished registration” and people use a variety of words by which they mean the same thing – eg: private plates.

Prefix Registration

This is a type of car registration. The year of the car can be identified by a prefix letter code. The format is Y123 XXX, where ‘Y’ is the year identifier.

Private Plates

See personalised registrations, above.


‘Q’ Marks

First introduced in 1983, they are issued to vehicles with no determined age. For example, Kit Conversion vehicles were built using components from more than one vehicle or for imported vehicles where the date of first registration is unknown.

Q marks were introduced to protect the used car buyer and it has received widespread support from the police and motor trade.

A transfer of registration cannot be performed on a Q marked vehicle.



The ‘recipient’ is the person to whom the car registration is transferred.

Registered Keeper

The person named on the V5C Registration Document is the registered keeper. This person is also responsible for taxing the vehicle. This may be different to the owner of the vehicle.

Registration Mark

The unique series of letters and numbers that identify an individual vehicle.

Registration Number

Registration Mark/ Private Number Plate.

This is the unique identifier which consists of letters and numbers. It appears in the format as approved by DVLA. The registration number is used by Police to help gain access to the vehicle’s records. The vehicle registration number is attached to the front and rear of all vehicles – apart from Motorcycles. A number plate must also be attached to any trailers or caravans.

There are two font styles allowed on all number plates – standard and 3D font.  No other varieties are permitted. The spacing of the numbers and letters must correspond with that printed on the V5C Registration Document.

Vehicle registration plates have to comply with The British Standard – BSAU 145D. This is broken down below:

  • The British Standard Number (currently BS AU 145d)
  • The name, trade mark, or other means of identification of the manufacturer or component supplier. (The company who actually make the number plate.)
  • The name and postcode of the supplying outlet.
  • A non-reflective border and the Euro-symbol with the national identification letters are optional additions.
  • There shall be no other markings or material contained on the number plate


This is the process of removing a registration number plate from a vehicle. It is retained for up to 10 years on a V778 document at a cost of £80. A Retention Document is issued when the number is not immediately transferred.

The Grantee is usually the person who put the registration number on Retention (i.e. the person registered as the keeper of the donor vehicle). At the time of transfer, the Grantee can be specified at the point of retention.  However, the Grantee cannot be changed once the Retention Document has been issued. When purchasing a registration number, it cannot be assigned onto a Retention Document in your name if it is already on retention.

A ‘nominee’ name can be added to the Document. This will allow the registration to be transferred to a vehicle registered in a name other than the Grantee’s. The nominee name can be updated at any time. However, the nominee cannot assign the registration number or extend the Retention Document and is not recognised by DVLA has having any rights relating to the registration mark.

Road Fund Licence

An old term for Vehicle Excise Duty.

Road Tax

A common, unofficial, colloquial term for Vehicle Excise Duty.


Suffix Registration

A type of car registration in which the year of issue is indicated by a suffix letter code. The format is  XXX 123Y, where “Y” is the year identifier.


Transfer Fee

The standard Government charge for transferring a number plate to or from a vehicle. It is currently £80.

Transfer Process

This is the process which is managed by our team of experts. They are in regular contact with the DVLA, based in Swansea. We do everything we can to ensure the transfer is done as quickly as possible and pride ourselves on our swift and efficient service.


Vehicle Excise Duty

Also known as Road Fund Licence and, commonly, as Road Tax.

VRO – the local DVLA Office

There are no longer any local vehicle registration offices; all cherished transfer business is conducted at DVLA in Swansea.

V5C Registration Certificate

Also known as V5C, V5C(W) and V5C(NI), commonly known as a ‘logbook’. It is a two-page certificate that is issued when a vehicle is registered with the DVLA. It is predominantly red in colour and will have a watermark in the white box when held up to the light.

This document is not proof of ownership, as the DVLA records vehicle keepers, and not the “owners”. The registered keeper is sent the V5C.

The information it shows includes:

  • vehicle registration number
  • vehicle keeper’s name and address
  • other important information about the vehicle (the make, vehicle identification number (VIN) and number of previous keepers)

V317 Document

This is the application form which is required to transfer a number from vehicle to vehicle, or vehicle to retention.

V62 Form

This form is used to apply for a replacement V5C registration document.

V750 Certificate of Entitlement

This is a DVLA certificate that holds a newly issued registration number until a vehicle is available. The certificate can only be renewed by the person who purchased the number plate. The number plate can only be assigned onto a vehicle registered to the purchaser or nominee.

V778 Certificate of Retention

This is a DVLA certificate that is issued by them when a registration mark as been “retained” (see Retention, above).
Spot anything incorrect or have a new term to add? Give us a call on 0121 353 3333 or fill out our Website Feedback form. 


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Posted in FAQ's

Transferring Registrations

Transferring your registration plate

We have made your vehicle registration transfer process easy with our 7 Day Guarantee (as long as the registration mark qualifies and you have paid the relevant fee) and step-by-step.

You’ve got your new private car reg, congratulations! Now you just need it to be transferred to your vehicle.

This is where many people get stumped as they don’t know where to go from here. Don’t worry, most of the steps can be promptly and efficiently completed by British Car Registrations.. Remember, you may not legally display the new mark until the transfer process is completed, or you risk being fined by the DVLA. Read DVLA Private Plate regulations here.

Buying a Personalised New Reg Plate

First of all, buy the reg plate you want for your vehicle. We can help you buy your private and personalised car number plates from British Car Registrations.

Transferring – the process

So you have your new registration and all the necessary documentation to prove it is yours. Now it is time to start the transfer process.

Assigning your new reg plate:

To display your new registration on your vehicle, you will need to apply to the DVLA (in person at Swansea in South Wales, by post or online). Alternatively, if you are a busy person, British Car Registrations offers this service to remove the hassle for you.

The documents required to do this are detailed below:

  • the V750 certificate of entitlement or the V778 retention document signed by the person named on the top of the certificate.
  • the registration document (V5C) or the new keeper supplement with a completed V62 “application for a vehicle registration certificate V5C” form.
  • an MOT test certificate for vehicles over 3 years old (1 year for heavy goods vehicles)

If the vehicle to which the new marl is being assigned or transferred already has a private registration on it, this will need to be removed first or you could lose the rights to use it. However, this can be done at the same time as assigning your new private plate.

Remember, you cannot assign or transfer a registration mark to a vehicle that would have the effect or making the vehicle appear to be newer than it is.  It will need to be registered, or about to be registered, and taxed to be driven in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.


Adding a nominee 

You can add a nominee when assigning the registration number by completing the relevant section of the V750 or V778.

Transferring your registration number:



A V778 certificate of retention expires after 10 years and you’ll need to renew it in order to retain your private registration plate for a further 10 years. Read our Retention Guide 

Posted in FAQ's

Cherished Number Plates

What is a Cherished Plate?

Cherished plates, also called dateless, private, personalised or elite number plates, is the DVLA’s official terminology but very often is used to describe the more exclusive ones issued before 1963.

Some have been in circulation for over 100 years!  Cherished plates have frequently remained in one family over the years, or on classic vehicles that have required a lot of love and attention in their lifetime to remain road-worthy.

One of the best examples of the cherished private number plate is the iconic A 1 car registration.

History of the Iconic A 1 Private Plate

In 1903, Earl Russell queued outside the London County Council office, apparently all night, so that he could be the first to secure the A 1 number plate. He was successful in his task and beat his rival by 5 seconds. Now, that is dedication!

Later on, the Chairman of the London County Council acquired the number plate, which then was sold to Mr George Pettyt in 1907, along with the car. He held the A 1 number plate for a good few years – simply transferring it onto each new vehicle he owned each time.

In 1950, after Mr George Pettyt’s death, it was left to Mr Laker in the will – under one condition – that he keep the A 1 private number plate until he passed away himself. Mr Laker kept this promise and in 1970, upon his death, Dunlop Tyres purchased the private number plate. They donated £2,500 to a charity which looked after Guide Dogs as Mr Laker had wished for.

The A 1 private number plate then changed hands once again in the 2000’s, this time going to Prince Jefri Bolkiah who is a member of the Brunei Royal Family. He paired the A 1 plate with the equally impressive 1 A plate on matching white Bentley Azures.

The 1 A private number plate sold at the first classic DVLA auction in 1989 for £160,000! So there you have it, the history of the A 1 and 1 A private plates.

Transfer of Cherished Number Plates.

Cherished number plates exist in two ways – on a certificate of entitlement (that details you as the legal owner) or on an actual vehicle. A cherished plate can be transferred from vehicle to certificate, and vice versa.

A cherished number plate can be transferred onto a certificate of entitlement or straight onto another vehicle – a DVLA fee of £80 is just required to make it transferable.

It’s simple to transfer a DVLA cherished number plate. It can either be done online or by post, all you need is the V5c registration document (and valid certificates which must be in date). Any vehicle participating in a cherished transfer must be both taxed and MOTed.

When a registration is removed from a vehicle and placed on a certificate or onto another vehicle, the original vehicle will receive another car registration in its place. This can either be the registration the vehicle had before the cherished number or another one which is suitable for that vehicle’s age.

How do I sell a Cherished Number Plate?

Just follow our simple step-by-step process to get you on the way to selling your personal number plate.

A Special Registration For You

You don’t need to break the bank to own a special registration. We can help you find a plate which is meaningful to you. We have been successfully directing our clients from buying to selling through to transferring their private number plates for more than 30 years. We pride ourselves on customer service, quality and value. We have finance plans and a price-match guarantee in place to make your experience with us as comfortable as possible. Give our team of experts a call on 0121 353 3333 or start your private plate search online today.

Posted in FAQ's
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