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VRM Swansea. DVLA RNPS:3166

Is My Private Plate Legal?

The number plate layout

In the UK, registrations are formatted in a very specific way by the DVLA. There is a fixed size and font, for example. Characters should be 79mm high and 50mm across, with a space of 11mm between them. Where there is a larger space between groups of letters and numbers, this should be 33mm. The plate itself needs to be made of reflective material.


Registration marks often an carry age-identifier. These indicate the year of issue, and the registration cannot be assigned to a vehicle that is older than this date.

Proof of ownership

Of course, your private plate needs to be registered to the vehicle to be legal! Check that the appropriate registration appears on your V5 Registration Document.

What if my plate is not legal?

Should your number plate not comply with DVLA regulations, you can face a £1000 fine and risk losing the rights to the registration as well.