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Drivers are only just finding out meaning behind the letters on car number plates

Drivers are only just finding out meaning behind the letters on car number plates

An experienced expert has explained the detailed formulas

Drivers are only just now finding out the meaning behind the letters on their car number plates.

While many motorists up and down the country pride themselves on their knowledge of all things cars - many will be shocked to learn the intricately detailed formulas behind the lettering and numbering on their plates.

Some savvy drivers will already know that the numbers shown at the back and front of a vehicle allude to the year it was first put on sale.

There's a 'hidden meaning' behind a vehicle's number plates.
Lisa Fotios / Pexels

However, two different numbers can be added to the plate annually depending on which half of the year the vehicle spun its wheels on the road for the first time.

So this month and year, for example, the very last cars that were issued before 1 September have a 23 number plate applied.

But, from next month, the newly released cars will carry the number 73 instead.

It's not just the dates, either, that are important to take note of as one motoring expert has explained just how significant the two capital letters before any numbers are.

An expert has explained the detailed formula behind the letters on number plates.
Catherine Falls Commercial / Getty Images

Jon Kirkbright, sales director at Private Number Plates with more than a decade of experience in the trade, has revealed that such initials are actually regional identifiers.

"To the untrained eye, number plates may look like a random combination of letters and numbers," he explained.

"While many people will be aware that the numbers refer to the year the car was made and registered, they may not know that the letters before them also have a hidden meaning.

"They are known as 'regional identifiers' and refer to the DVLA office where the car was registered.

"This may be why your number plates start with the same letters if you buy more than one car from the same dealership, for example - it is not just a coincidence."

In short, the letters link cars to specific postal codes covering different regions.

Curious as to what yours is?

Well, look no further as Jon has gone the extra mile - pun intended - and compiled an extensive list tagging the UK's number plates and linking them to the DVLA's precise geographical locations.

Brace yourself for a whole avalanche of the alphabet...

Your whip will be from Anglia, Peterborough if it has the initials: "AA, AB, AC, AD, AE, AF, AG, AH, AJ, AK, AL, AM, AN."

Anglia, Norwich with: "AO, AP, AR, AS, AT, AU."

You're looking at Anglia, Ipswich if there's one of these plastered on your car: "AV, AW, AX, AY."

Cymru, Cardiff, has quite a few: "CA, CB, CC, CD, CE, CF, CG, CH, CJ, CK, CL, CM, CN, CO."

Whereas Cymru, Swansea, only has six in comparison: "CP, CR, CS, CT, CU, CV."

And there's even less for Cymru, Bangor: "CW CX CY."

Preston has a whopping 18: "PA, PB, PC, PD, PE, PF, PG, PH, PJ, PK, PL, PM, PN, PO, PP, PR, PS, PT."

Meanwhile, Manchester and Merseyside has MA and MY.

It only goes on from there.

Featured Image Credit: Peter Titmuss/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images/Getty stock

Topics: Cars, Driving