Article by Arne Barker, Area Representative Glos Wilts & Bristol, 2010. Text from 1963.

Formerly, the letters came before the numbers, latterly the positions have been reversed to provide further combinations. These are issued by a County Council, County Borough or Burgh Council (designated below – C.C., C.B.C. or B.C., respectively). Each authority has a set of one or two code letters and these are listed below. In tracing the origin of a plate with three letters the last two will indicate the issuing authority, e.g. a car bearing a plate ARA or ARB will have been registered in Derbyshire, as RA and RB are the code letters of that County Council. An exception to this is GPO. This is an index issued by the London County Council to the General Post Office.

Click on the second letter of the three letter combination in your registration – eg for ARA click on R then look up RA

A London C.C.
AA Hampshire C.C.
AB Worcestershire C.C.
AC Warwick C.C.
AD Gloucestershire C.C.
AE Bristol C.B.C.
AF Cornwall C.C.
AG Ayr C.C.
AH Norfolk C.C.
AI Meath C.C.
AJ North Riding of Yorks C.C.
AK Bradford C.B.C.
AL Nottinghamshire C.C.
AM Wilts C.C.
AN West Ham C.B.C
AO Cumberland C.C.
AP East Sussex C.C.
AR Hertford C.C.
AS Nairn c.C.
AT Kingston-upon-Hull C.B.C.
AU Nottingham C.B.C.
AV Aberdeenshire C.C.
AW Salop C.C.
AX Monmouth C.C.
AY Leicestershire C.C.
AZ Belfast C.B.C.

B Lancashire C.C.
BA Salford C.B.C.
BB Newcastle-upon-Tyne C.B.C.
BC Leicester C.B.C.
BD Northamptonshire C.C.
BE Parts of Lindsey (Lincs) C.C.
BF Dorset C.C
BG Birkenhead C.B.C
BH Bucks C.C.
BI Monaghan C.C.
BJ East Suffolk C.C.
BK Portsmouth C.B.C.
BL Berks C.C.
BM Bedford C.C.
BN Bolton C.B.C.
BO Cardiff C.B.C.
BP West Sussex C.C.
BR Sunderland C.B.C.
BS Orkney C.C.
BT East Riding of Yorks C.C.
BU Oldham C.B.C.
BV Blackburn C.B.C.
BW Oxfordshire C.C.
BX Carmarthen C.C.
BY Croydon C.B.C.
BZ Down C.C.

C West Riding of Yorks C.C.
CA Denbigh C.C.
CB Blackburn C.B.C.
CC Caerarvon C.C.
CD Brighton C.B.C.
CE Cambridge C.C.
CF West Suffolk C.C.
CG Hampshire C.C.
CH Derby C.B.C.
CI Laoighis C.C.
CJ Hereford C.C.
CK Preston C.B.C.
CL Norwich C.B.C.
CM Birkenhead C.B.C.
CN Gateshead C.B.c.
CO Plymouth C.B.C.
CP Halifax C.B.C.
CR Southampton C.B.c.
CS Ayr C.C.
CT Parts of Kesteven (Lincs) C.C.
CU South Shields C.B.C.
CV Cornwall C.C.
CW Burnley C.B.C.
CX Huddersfield C.B.C
CY Swansea C.B.C.
CZ Belfast C.B.C.

D Kent C.C.
DA Wolverhampton C.B.C.
DB Stockport C.B.C.
DC Middlesbrough C.B.C.
DD Gloucestershire C.C.
DE Pembroke C.C.
DF Gloucestershire C.C.
DG Gloucestershire C.C.
DH Walsall C.B.C.
DI Roscommon C.C.
DJ St.Helens C.B.C.
DK Rochdale C.B.C.
DL Isle of Wight
DM Flint C.C.
DN York C.B.C.
DO Parts of Holland (Lincs) C.C.
DP Reading C.B.C.
DR Plymouth C.B.C.
DS Peebles C.C.
DT Doncaster C.B.C.
DU Coventry C.B.C.
DV Devon C.C.
DW Newport (Mon) C.B.C.
DX Ipswich C.B.C.
DY Hastings C.B.C.
DZ Antrim C.C.

E Staffordshire C.C.
EA West Bromwich C.B.C.
EB Isle of Ely C.C.
EC Westmorland C.C.
ED Warrington C.B.C.
EE Grimsby C.B.C.
EF West Hartlepool C.B.C.
EG Peterborough, Soke of, C.C.
EH Stoke-o-Trent C.B.C.
EI Silgo C.C.
EJ Cardigan C.C.
EK Wigan C.B.C.
EL Bournemouth C.B.C.
EM Bootle C.B.C.
EN Bury C.B.c.
EO Barrow-in-Furness C.B.C.
EP Montgomery C.C.
ER Cambridge C.C.
ES Perth C.C.
ET Rotherham C.B.C.
EU Breconshire C.C.
EV Essex C.C.
EW Huntingdon C.C.
EX Great Yarmouth C.B.C.
EY Anglesey C.C.
EZ Belfast C.B.C.

F Essex C.C.
FA Burton-on-Trent C.B.C.
FB Bath C.B.C.
FC Oxford C.B.C.
FD Dudley C.B.C.
FE Lincoln C.B.C.
FF Merioneth C.C.
FG Fife C.C.
FH Gloucester C.B.C.
FI North Riding of Tipparary C.C.
FJ Exeter C.B.C.
FK Worcester C.B.C.
FL Peterborough, Soke of, C.C.
FM Chester C.B.C.
FN Canterbury C.B.C.
FO Radnor C.C.
FP Rutland C.C.
FR Blackpool C.B.C.
FS Edinburgh B.C.
FT Tynmouth C.B.C.
FU Parts of Lindsey (Lincs) C.C.
FV Blackpool C.B.C.
FW Parts of Lindsey (Lincs) C.C.
FX Dorset C.C.
FY Southport C.B.C.
FZ Belfast C.B.C.

G Glasgow B.C.
GA Glasgow B.C.
GC London C.C.
GD Glasgow B.C.
GE Glasgow B.C.
GF London C.C.
GG Glasgow B.C.
GH London C.C.
GJ London C.C.
GK London C.C.
GL Bath C.B.C.
GM Motherwell and Wishaw B.C.
GN London C.C.
GO London C.C.
GP London C.C.
GR Sunderland C.B.C.
GS Perth C.C.
GT London C.C.
GU London C.C.
GV West Suffolk C.C.
GW London C.C.
GX London C.C.
GY London C.C.
GZ Belfast C.B.C.

H Middlesex c.C.
HA Smethwick C.B.C.
HB Merthyr Tydfil C.B.C.
HC Eastbourne C.B.C.
HD Dewsbury C.B.C.
HE Barnsley C.B.C.
HF Wallasey C.B.C.
HG Burnley C.B.C
HH Carlisle C.B.C.
HI South Riding of Tipparary C.C.
HJ Southend-on-Sea C.B.C.
HK Essex C.C.
HL Wakefield C.B.C.
HM East Ham C.B.C.
HN Darlington C.B.C.
HO Southampton C.C.
HP Coventry C.B.C.
HR Wilts C.C.
HS Renfrew C.C.
HT Bristol C.B.C.
HU Bristol C.B.c.
HV East Ham C.B.C.
HW Bristol C.B.C.
HX Middlesex C.C.
HY Bristol C.B.C.
HZ Tyrone C.C.

IA Antrim C.C.
IB Armagh C.C.
IC Carlow C.C.
ID Cavan C.C.
IE Clare C.C.
IF Cork C.C.
IH Donegal C.C.
IJ Down C.C.
IK Dublin C.C.
IL Fermanagh C.C.
IM Galway C.C.
IN Kerry C.C.
IO Kildare C.C.
IP Kilkenny C.C.
IR Offaly C.C.
IT Leitrim C.C.
IU Limerick C.C.
IW Londonderry C.C.
IX Longford C.C.
IY Louth C.C.
IZ Mayo C.C.

J Durham C.C.
JA Stockport C.B.C.
JB Berks C.C.
JC Caernarvon C.C.
JD West Ham C.B.C.
JE Isle of Ely C.C.
JF Leicester C.B.C.
JG Canterbury C.B.C.
JH Hertford C.C.
JI Tyrone C.C.
JJ London C.C.
JK Eastbourne C.B.C.
JL Parts of Holland (Lincs) C.C.
JM Westmorland C.C.
JN Southend C.B.C.
JO Oxford C.B.C
JP Wigan C.P.C.
JR Northumberland C.C.
JS Ross and Cromarty C.C.
JT Dorset C.C.
JU Leicestershire C.C.
JV Grimsby C.B.C.
JW Wolverhampton C.B.C.
JX Halifax C.B.C.
JY Plymouth C.B.C.
JZ Down C.C.

K Liverpool C.B.C.
KA Liverpool C.B.C.
KB Liverpool C.B.C.
KC Liverpool C.B.C.
KD Liverpool C.B.C.
KE Kent C.C.
KF Liverpool C.B.C.
KG Cardiff C.B.C.
KH Kingston-upon-Hull C.B.C.
KI Waterford C.C.
KJ Kent C.C.
KK Kent C.C.
KL Kent C.C.
KM Kent C.C.
KN Kent C.C.
KO Kent C.C.
KP Kent C.C.
KR Kent C.C.
KS Roxburgh C.C.
KT Kent C.C.
KU Bradford C.B.C.
KV Coventry C.B.C.
KW Bradford C.B.C.
KX Bucks C.C.
KY Bradford C.B.C.
KZ Antrim C.C.

L Glamorgan C.C.
LA London C.C.
LB London C.C.
LC London C.C.
LD London C.C.
LE London C.C.
LF London C.C.
LG Cheshire C.C.
LH London C.C.
LI Westmeath C.C.
LJ Bournemouth C.B.C.
LK London C.C.
LL London C.C.
LM London C.C.
LN London C.C.
LO London C.C.
LP London C.C.
LR London C.C.
LS Selkirk C.B.C.
LT London C.C.
LU London C.C.
LV Liverpool C.B.C.
LW London C.C.
LX London C.C.
LY London C.C.
LZ Armagh C.C.

M Cheshire C.C.
MA Cheshire C.C.
MB Cheshire C.C.
MC Middlesex C.C.
MD Middlesex C.C.
ME Middlesex C.C.
MF Middlesex C.C.
MG Middlesex C.C.
MH Middlesex C.C.
MI Wexford C.C.
MJ Bedford C.C.
MK Middlesex C.C.
ML Middlesex C.C.
MM Middlesex C.C.
MO Berks C.C.
MP Middlesex C.C.
MR Wilts C.C.
MS Stirling C.C.
MT Middlesex C.C.
MU Middlesex C.C.
MV Middlesex C.C.
MW Wilts C.C.
MX Middlesex C.C.
MY Middlesex C.C.
MZ Belfast C.B.C.

N Manchester C.B.C.
NA Manchester C.B.C.
NB Manchester C.B.C.
NC Manchester C.B.C.
ND Manchester C.B.C.
NE Manchester C.B.C.
NF Manchester C.B.C.
NG Norfolk C.C.
NH Northampton C.B.C.
NI Wicklow C.C.
NJ East Sussex C.C.
NK Hertford C.C.
NL Northumberland C.C.
NM Bedford C.C.
N0 Essex C.C.
NP Worcestershire C.C.
NR Leicestershire C.C.
NS Sutherland C.C.
NT Salop C.C.
NU Derbyshire C.C.
NV Northamptonshire C.C.
NW Leeds C.B.C.
NX Warwick C.C.
NY Glamorgan C.C.
NZ Londonderry C.C.

O Birmingham C.B.C.
OA Birmingham C.B.C.
OB Birmingham C.B.C.
OC Birmingham C.B.C.
OD Devon C.C.
OE Birmingham C.B.C.
OF Birmingham C.B.C.
OG Birmingham C.B.C.
OH Birmingham C.B.C.
OI Belfast C.B.C.
OJ Birmingham C.B.C.
OK Birmingham C.B.C.
OL Birmingham C.B.C.
OM Birmingham C.B.C.
ON Birmingham C.B.C.
OO Essex C.C
OP Birmingham C.B.C.
OR Hampshire C.C.
OS Wigtown C.C.
OT Hampshire C.C.
OU Hampshire C.C.
OV Birmingham C.B.C.
OW Southampton C.B.C.
OX Birmingham C.B.C.
OY Croydon C.B.C.
OZ Belfast C.B.C.

P Surrey C.C.
PA Surrey C.C.
PB Surrey C.C.
PC Surrey C.C.
PD Surrey C.C.
PE Surrey C.C.
PF Surrey C.C.
PG Surrey C.C.
PH Surrey C.C.
PI Cork C.B.C.
PJ Surrey C.C.
PK Surrey C.C.
PL Surrey C.C.
PM East Sussex C.C.
PN East Sussex C.C.
PO West Sussex C.C.
PP Bucks C.C.
PR Dorset C.C.
PS Zetland C.C.
PT Durham C.C.
PU Essex C.C.
PV Ipswich C.B.C.
PW Norfolk C.C.
PX West Sussex C.C.
PY North Riding of Yorks C.C.
PZ Belfast C.C.

QA London C.C.
QB London C.C.
QC London C.C.
QD London C.C.
QE London C.C.
QF London C.C.
QG London C.C.
QH London C.C.
QJ London C.C.
QK London C.C.
QL London C.C.
QM London C.C.
QN London C.C.
QP London C.C.
QQ London C.C.
QS London C.C.

R Derbyshire C.C.
RA Derbyshire C.C.
RB Derbyshire C.C.
RC Derby C.B.C.
RD Reading C.B.C.
RE Staffordshire C.C.
RF Staffordshire C.C.
RG Aberdeen B.C.
RH Kingston-upon-Hull C.B.C.
RI Dublin C.B.C.
RJ Salford C.B.C.
RK Croydon C.B.C.
RL Cornwall C.C.
RM Cumberland C.C.
RN Preston C.B.C.
RO Hertford C.C.
RP Northamptonshire C.C.
RR Nottinghamshire C.C.
RS Aberdeen B.C.
RT East Suffolk C.C.
RU Bournemouth C.B.C.
RV Portsmouth C.B.C.
RW Coventry C.B.C.
RX Berks C.C.
RY Leicester C.B.C.
RZ Antrim C.C.

S Edinburgh B.C.
SA Aberdeenshire C.C.
SB Argyll C.C.
SC Edinburgh B.C.
SD Ayr C.C.
SE Banff C.C.
SF Edinburgh B.C.
SG Edinburgh B.C.
SH Berwick C.C.
SJ Bute C.C.
SK Caithness C.C.
SL Clackmannan C.C.
SM Dumfries C.C.
SN Dumbarton C.C.
SN London C.C.
SO Moray C.C.
SP Fife C.C.
SR Angus C.C.
SS East Lothian C.C.
ST Inverness C.C.
SU Kincardine C.C.
SV Kinross C.C.
SW Kirkcudbright C.C.
SX West Lothaian C.C.
SZ Down C.C.

T Devon C.C.
TA Devon C.C.
TB Lancashire C.C.
TC Lancashire C.C.
TD Lancashire C.C.
TE Lancashire C.C.
TF Lancashire C.C.
TG Glamorgan C.C.
TH Carmarthen C.C.
TI Limerick C.B.C.
TJ Lancashire C.C.
TK Dorset C.C.
TL Parts of Kesteven (Lincs) C.C.
TM Bedford C.C.
TN Newcastle-upon-Tyne C.B.C.
TO Nottingham C.B.C.
TP Portsmouth C.B.C.
TR Southampton C.B.C.
TS Dundee B.C.
TT Devon C.C.
TU Cheshire C.C.
TV Nottingham C.B.C.
TW Essex C.C.
TX Glamorgan C.C.
TY Northumberland C.C.
TZ Belfast C.B.C.

U Leeds C.B.C.
UA Leeds c.B.C.
UB Leeds c.B.C.
UC London C.C.
UD Oxfordshire C.C.
UE Warwick C.C.
UF Brighton C.B.C.
UG Leeds C.B.C.
UH Cardiff C.B.C.
UI Londonderry C.B.C.
UJ Salop C.C.
UK Wolverhampton C.B.C.
UL London C.C.
UM Leeds C.B.C.
UN Denbigh C.C.
UO Devon C.C.
UP Durham C.C.
UR Hertford C.C.
US Glasgow B.C.
UT Leicestershire C.C.
UU London C.C.
UV London C.C.
UW London C.C.
UX Salop C.C.
UY Worcestershire C.C.
UZ Belfast C.B.C

V Lanark C.C.
VA Lanark C.C.
VB Crordon C.B.C.
VC Coventry C.B.C
VD Lanark C.C.
VE Cambridge C.C.
VF Norfolk C.C.
VG Norwich C.B.C.
VH Huddersfield C.B.C.
VJ Hereford C.C
VK Newcastle-upon-Tyne C.B.C.
VL Lincoln C.B.C.
VM Manchester C.B.C.
VN North Riding of Yorks C.C.
VO Nottinghamshire C.C.
VP Birmingham C.B.C.
VR Manchester C.B.C
VS Greenock B.C.
VT Stoke-on-Trent C.B.C.
VU Manchester C.B.C.
VV Northampton C.B.C.
VW Essex C.C.
VX Essex C.C.
VY York C.B.C.

W  Sheffield C.B.C.
WA  Sheffield C.B.C.
WB  Sheffield C.B.C.
WC  Essex C.C.
WD  Warwick C.C.
WE  Sheffield C.B.C.
WF  East Riding of Yorks C.C.
WG  Stirling C.C.
WH  Bolton C.B.C.
WI  Waterford C.B.C.
WJ  Sheffield C.B.C.
WK  Coventry C.B.C.
WL  Oxford C.B.C
WM  Southport C.B.C.
WN  Swansea C.B.C.
WO  Monmouth C.C.
WP  Worcestershire C.C.
WR  West Riding of Yorks C.C.
WS  Edinburgh B.C.
WT  West Riding of Yorks C.C.
WU  West Riding of Yorks C.C.
WV  Wilts C.C.
WW  West Riding of Yorks C.C.
WX  West Riding of Yorks C.C.
WY  West Riding of Yorks C.C.

X Northumberland C.C.
XA London C.C.
XB London C.C.
XC London C.C.
XD London C.C.
XE London C.C.
XF London C.C.
XG Middlesbrough C.B.C.
XH London C.C
XI Belfast C.B.C.
XJ Manchester C.B.C.
XK London C.C.
XL London C.C.
XM London C.C.
XN London C.C.
XO London C.C.
XP London C.C.
XR London C.C.
XS Paisley B.C.
XT London C.C.
XU London C.C.
XV London C.C.
XW London C.C.
XX London C.C.
XY London C.C.

Y Somerset C.C.
YA Somerset C.C.
YB Somerset C.C.
YC Somerset C.C.
YD Somerset C.C.
YE London C.C.
YF London C.C.
YG West Riding of Yorks C.C.
YH London C.C.
YI Dublin C.B.C.
YJ Dundee B.C.
YK London C.C.
YL London C.C.
YM London C.C.
YN London C.C.
YO London C.C.
YP London C.C.
YR London C.C.
YS Glasgow B.C.
YT London C.C.
YU London C.C.
YV London C.C.
YW London C.C.
YX London C.C.
YY London C.C.

Z Dublin C.C.
ZA Dublin C.B.C.
ZB Cork C.C.
ZC Dublin C.B.C.
ZD Dublin C.B.C.
ZE Dublin C.C.
ZF Cork C.B.C.
ZH Dublin C.B.C.
ZI Dublin C.B.C.
ZJ Dublin C.B.C.
ZK Cork C.C.
ZL Dublin C.B.C.
ZM Galway C.C.
ZN Meath C.C.
ZO Dublin C.C.
ZP Donegal C.C.
ZR Wexford C.C.
ZT Cotk C.C.
ZU Dublin C.C.
ZW Kildare C.C.
ZX Kerry C.C.
ZY Louth C.C.
ZZ Dublin C.C.
ZZ The Council of any county which adjoins Northern Ireland
ZZ The Royal Irish Automibile Club
ZZ The Automobile Association, Dublin