Local number plates to be given a new lease of life

FERMANAGH number plates may be set to see a shake-up to their current format, according to a Lisbellaw based number plate supplier.
Dessie Elton of SpeedyReg outlined that after working through the remaining Fermanagh series of UIG, VIG, WIG, XIG and YIG there is set to be a format change whereby numbers will be placed in front of letters. Mr Elton estimates that this change will take place in approximately three years.
“We would reckon that it takes about nine months or so to go through a series and we are about half way through UIG. That would leave us about three years away from change.”
The comments follow a recent meeting he attended with the DVLA in London. Commenting on the decision to reverse the format of the number plates here, he said, “They had looked at going to a totally new format for each county and that has been ruled out now, I think it was too complicated. They had also looked at formats used in Southern Ireland, however, there were concerns that there may have been a clash. So it was decided that the simplest way to do it would to be reverse all the numbers which hadn’t been reversed. The IL’s were the last series to be reversed.”
While the format change may take some getting used to Mr Elton remarked that it was positive in that it would secure the future of Northern Ireland registrations for some time to come.
“This is probably quite a good way to go, it is reigniting the old numbers which have long gone. There were some very good issues in Fermanagh like GIL and DIL and so on, it will bring those back again. We’ll start with AIL and go though the alphabet and then to AIG and so forth, so that’s a long way to go.”
It is understood that that the new proposed format could follow the pattern of 1000 AIL. If rubber stamped this will be the first major overhaul of number plate formatting to take place in the North in approximately 50 years.
A spokesman for the DVLA did not confirm if a future change in format would involve placing numbers in front of letters, rather he said, “There are no immediate plans to change the current format in Northern Ireland.”

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