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DRIVETIME: MOTORING: Making sense of the number plate changes.

SEVERAL Drivetime readers have asked if it was possible to produce a list of all new registration districts in the UK. A tremendous amount of interest, not to mention confusion, has been generated by the changeover. STEWART SMITH explains the changes, with the help of a table, to help people understand the origin of the registrations.

SEPTEMBER 1 saw the new format number plate introduced.

The DVLA says the change was needed as the old system of age identifiers, using a single letter at the start of the number plate, run out of combinations with Y registrations on August 31 this year.

The new number plate format shows the area in which a vehicle was registered, as well as the year and, specifically, in which half of the year it was registered.

The first two letters of the new format number plate show at which of the DVLA's 40 local offices a vehicle is first registered. Each office has been assigned a set of unique two-letter local memory tags.

The following two numbers, 51, stand for the six-month period when the car was registered. March, 2002, the number will change to 02.

The final three letters of the registration are generated at random, making each registration unique.

As an example: A vehicle registered in the Birmingham region now (including Coventry and Warwickshire) could be:

BC 51 ABC

Registration guide

(Local Identifier; DVLA Office; Local Office Identifier)

A;Peterborough; ABCDEFGHJKLMN

A; Norwich;OPRSTU

A; Ipswich;VWXY

B;Birmingham;A-Y

C;Cardiff;ABCDEFGHJKLMNO

C;Swansea; PRSTUV

C; Bangor; WXY

D;Chester;ABCDEFGHJK

D;Shrewsbury; LMNOPRSTUVWXY

E;Chelmsford; A-Y

F;Nottingham; ABCDEFGHJKLMNOP

F;Lincoln;RSTUVWXY

G; Maidstone; ABCDEFGHJ

G;Brighton;PRSTUVWXY

H; Bournemouth;ABCDEFGHJ

H; Portsmouth; KLMNOPRSTUVWXY

K; Luton; ABCDEFGHJKL

K; Northampton; MNOPRSTUVWXY

L;Wimbledon; ABCDEFGHJ

L;Stanmore; KLMNOPRST

L;Sidcup;UVWXY

M;Manchester; A-Y

N; Newcastle; ABCDEGHJKLMNO

N; Stockton; PRSTUVWXY

O; Oxford; A-Y

P; Preston; ABCDEFGHJKLMNOPRST

P; Carlisle; UVWXY

R; Reading; A-Y

S; Glasgow; ABCDEFGHJ

S; Edinburgh; KLMNO

S; Aberdeen; UVW

S; Inverness;XY

V; Worcester; A-Y

W;Exeter; ABCDEFGHJ

W; Truro; KL

W; Bristol; MNOPRSTUVWXY

Y; Leeds; ABCDEFGHJK

Y; Sheffield; LMNOPRSTU

Y; Beverley; VWXY
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Copyright 2001 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Supplement
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Nov 2, 2001
Words:353
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