12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

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Steve B
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12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Steve B » Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:41 pm

Never thought I'd spend a good part of two days trying to work out what's road legal when it comes to finding a number plate that'll fit the 12"x6" spaces front and back.

Anyways, the attached document gives it in a nutshell, which is surprising in that it's the source legal instrument (they're usually more difficult to read and interpret). Regulation 14A. When you do the calcs you can see that it's been done to fill the gap in the new regulations issued a year before where it's silent on imports.

In that a registration mark over two lines gives a height of: 5 + 64 + 5 + 64 + 13 = 151mm = ~6"

Loads of room width-wise, though not much left for a 6mm border if desired, which would normally be road legal. Still, a whole lot better than the situation created before the amendment was brought in.

Good to know if you find an awkward MOTer - fortunately most still use a bit of common sense and discretion ;-)
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Last edited by Steve B on Thu Jul 06, 2017 7:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Davy J
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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Davy J » Thu Jul 06, 2017 4:07 am

Good information there Steve. Thanks for posting.
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Steve B
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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Steve B » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:54 am

Thanks Dave, I'll post a few more pointers this evening that I came across when looking into it.

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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Davy J » Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:26 am

:thumb:
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Steve B
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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Steve B » Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:00 pm

Just following on from my original post, the following links are to the core legislation and guidance. Fortunately, the 2002 Amendment Regulation 14A is very succinct, getting straight to the point.

The core legislation, which can be read on the website or downloaded as pdf, is:

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2001 ... tents/made - the first statutory instrument I've seen with pictures in it (!) so worth a look
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2002 ... tents/made - the key text, Reg 14A straight to the point

The government guidance and trade body websites, both useful reading:

https://www.gov.uk/displaying-number-plates/overview - mentions about registered number plate suppliers
https://www.bnma.org/ - useful read from an organisation who's existence depends on maintaining the rules

An important point is that whilst there are some websites I've found which claim to supply 100% legal plates but don't require any ID, Section 3 of the government guidance shows that they are not in fact legal, as plates can only be legitimately provided by registered number plate suppliers (who must confirm ID before supplying new plates). When you look into it further you find these websites are run by companies based in Ireland who are looking to get around the legislative requirements, being outside the UK. Some old links I found to these kinds of companies sometimes didn't find the website, which suggests they keep re-inventing themselves under different names. Whilst such companies are fine for show plates, they mislead when they claim they can provide 100% road legal UK plates (nearly fell into it myself).

In summary of what seems to be achievable under the 2002 Amendment Regulation 14A:

• Registration marks of 6 or 7 characters will mostly have to be over two lines (unless a lot of '1's in there which legally take up less room);
• Registration marks of 5 or less characters can be over one line (Reg 14A is silent on width of 'middle' gap but Part 3 Table B of 2001 Regs suggests 30mm between groups).

The use of (up to) 6mm borders does not seem to be specifically mentioned in the legislation, 2001 or 2002, though the BNMA site says (for standard plates):
COMPANY ARTWORK, LOGOS ETC

All number plates must show the suppliers name and postcode. It must be displayed in the centre, at the bottom of the plate and must not exceed 178mm total length and have a maximum height of 13mm. No other advertising is allowed, though a single coachline, not exceeding 6mm thick is permitted."
Not sure where they get this from, but presume that if the coachline doesn't obstruct the critical measurements/gaps then it is not considered a distraction. So in the case of 12"x6" plates, a border would only likely be allowed on single line registration marks, and not allowed for two line registration marks (ie, in the case of most 6 and 7 character marks).

Upshot is I'm off to Halfords, can't get much more straight-laced than that, and see what they can do for me - more to put it to the test than anything else.

Maybe sometime in the future I may push the boat out and buy a registration mark which will fit on one line and treat myself to a border - simple pleasures! :driving:

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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Davy J » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:22 am

Well, I guess that's all there is to it then..... :roll:
Another world these people live in.
Too much for me, well done for explaining it Steve. :oldclap:
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Steve B
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Re: 12"x6" UK Legal Number Plates

Post by Steve B » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:01 pm

Glad I got it out of my system, so I can now forget it ! :smile:

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