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Cherished Number Plates


Creating a personal on-road identity for your vehicle can be achieved by using cherished number plates. These specialised plates differ from the typical format allowing the owner to customise registrations with their own cherished numbers. 


Creating a fully unique and personalised identity, cherished number plates have a wide appeal that goes far beyond simply making a vehicle stand out.  Cherished plates convey originality and exclusivity that’s hard to beat.


Standard number plates that are issued to newly registered vehicles by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) follow the two, two, three format. 


A Standard number plate is created using:  


  • 2 letters that identify the area of registration
  • 2 numbers to identify the year of registration
  • 3 letters selected at random


This system was instituted in 2001 and applies to all UK countries except Northern Ireland, which utilises its own number-plate system.


Because cherished number plates were introduced before age identification, they often display highly sought valuable letters, numbers, and/or messages.


Apart from being inherently unique, cherished numbers are made even more appealing by the fact that no-one can lay claim to the same plate. Cherished number plates are one of a kind, unlike vehicles where many can own the same make or model.  


How to transfer a cherished number plate


Cherished numbers can be found in two places;



A cherished plate can be transferred from a vehicle to a certificate, or vice versa. A DVLA fee of £80 is payable to make a cherished registration ‘transferable’.


Transfers can be performed by post but the V5C logbook will be required. A simpler way is to transfer cherished numbers online. Vehicles must be taxed and tested, and certificates must be valid and not expired for a cherished plate transfer to be successful.


When a cherished registration is moved from a vehicle to a certificate or to another vehicle, another registration mark to take its place. This can be a random registration of suitable age for the vehicle. More commonly, it is the vehicles original registration prior to the cherished number plate being issued.


What are the rules for purchasing cherished number plates?


Cherished number plates are subject to one main rule: A cherished number cannot be used to make a vehicle appear newer than it really is.


Before the internet, the age of a vehicle could be disguised by installing newer age identifying number plates. Meaning that customers could potentially buy a vehicle that appeared younger than its true age.


The majority of today’s cherished number plates tend to make vehicles appear older. So the only regulation owner’s have to consider is the correct use of the transfer form.  


Provided the cherished plates lawfully purchased, with the correct paperwork, and are used in compliance with the age rule, any cherished number can be used on a vehicle.

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