private personalised number plates >  number plate news >

History of Registration Numbers


People specialising in the history of number plates are called numberologists, and we are all fortunate for the research that is gathered by these few specialists.

The first number plate to be issued was A 1, which was first released in 1903. Earl Russell waited up all night to buy the plate which he put on his Napier motor car. This car along with its registration number then moved on to the Chairman of  London County Council, who in 1907 sold the car and registration number to George Pettyt. George transferred the number onto a Sunbeam Talbot 90. George died in 1950, leaving the car and number to a Trevor Laker. The terms of the will were that he had the use of the car until his death, when this moment came the car was to be sold and money be donated to a dogs charity. Upon his death in 1970 the number was bought by Dunlop Holdings Ltd., and a donation made to Guide Dogs for the Blind Association. We now believe the registration number A 1 belongs to the Sultan of Brunei.

Back to news >>