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Telecoms boss told to rid of 'obscene' number plate after DVLA sold it to him

A motorist who bought the cheeky personalized number plate 'BO11 LUX' for his new car has been ordered by the DVLA to remove it - even though he bought it from their website.

Alan Clarke from Chesterfield, bought the plate for £399 from the official DVLA website to put on his new black Range Rover and says it left family,
friends and other motorists in stitches when they saw it.

But within six weeks, he received a serious letter from the DVLA telling him the plate was 'causing offence' and demanded that he remove it from his vehicle.

The DVLA says it is an offence for it to still be displayed.

Mr Clarke, who is the chairman of a telecoms company in Chesterfield, Derby, is baffled by the organization’s stance.

The married father-of-one said - 'It's absolutely ludicrous. I saw it on the DVLA website last November and thought it would be a bit of fun to put it on my new car. On March 1, when I picked up the car, I immediately put the plate on. Everyone just bursts out laughing when they see it and it's unique.’

'But out of the blue in mid-April I got a very strongly worded letter from the
DVLA saying my plate has slipped through the net and should never have appeared for sale on the website.

'They said it was causing offence and I had to remove it, and they are
threatening to criminalize me. But they are a government agency and they put the plate on their own website for anyone to buy so it's 100 per cent legal. I would love to know what offence I am committing as they haven't told me. I have got the receipt for the plate, the registration document and the vehicle is fully taxed and insured so I'm at a loss to see what the problem is.’

'They sent me a normal plate to put on but I sent it straight back, I don't
want it. If they didn't want me to buy it they shouldn't have put it on their

Mr Clarke says he was tailed by a police car a few days after putting the plate on, and fears the officer may have reported him to the DVLA.

He says: 'I can't imagine why anyone would be offended by it. In fact I was
inspired by a plate I saw on the website which was '130 LUX' so who's deciding what's offensive and what isn't? Who is this mysterious arbiter of public taste? It's nonsensical.

'I assume it was the police officer who informed the DVLA. If that's the case I can't believe he didn't have anything better to do.

'I've tried calling and emailing the DVLA but I never receive a reply. I think
they are embarrassed that they have let a plate slip the net but that's hardly my fault. They've also still got similar plates for sale on the website so why haven't they taken them down?

'I'm not backing down on this, it's my own personal plate and I'm not taking it off.'

Mr Clarke said that the letter from the organization does not specify what his punishment will be if he keeps using the plate.

He added that similar saucy plates are still available on the DVLA website.
'BU11 LUX' is priced at £405, 'BAL 4S' costs £450.

A DVLA spokesman said: 'Many people enjoy displaying a personalised
registration number and the vast majority of numbers are made available, but we have a responsibility to ensure that the combinations used do not cause offence.

'DVLA tries to identify combinations that may cause offence, and on the rare occasion where potentially offensive numbers slip through the net, steps are taken to withdraw the registration number.

'This particular registration plate has been withdrawn; therefore it is an
offence for the driver to still be displaying it. He would receive a refund for
the plate.'