CB 1 Number Plate High Offer For Sale
A BUSINESSMAN is to make a £250,000 cash offer to buy the historic CB1 number plate of the mayor of Blackburn with Darwen's official car.
Multi-millionaire Charlie Barton said he plans to make a formal offer to borough chief executive Harry Catherall for the rare registration.
The council however has said the number plate is not for sale although it would consider 'serious and substantial offers'.
Previously in 2010 when the registration plate was valued at £200,000 the council said it would not sell.
Mr Barton said if he succeeds in buying the plate, which started on a Blackburn Council dustbin lorry in 1904, it could end up on Rolls-Royce.
The 30-year-old made an informal approach in March last year through Conservative councillor Mike Lee but his offer of £250,000 was then turned down.
As an alternative to his offer, Mr Barton said he was also prepared to arrange the filling of some of the '4,000 potholes in Blackburn, Lancashire' immortalised in the Beatles song ' Day in the Life'.
A council spokesman said the authority would consider an official request 'with an open mind'.
Cllr Andy Kay, borough resources boss, said: "The number plate is not for sale but if there was a serious and substantial offer, we would consider it.
"£250,000 is a drop in the ocean of our highways' budget let alone the overall one."
Mr Barton, who owns a caravan park and recycling businesses in Lancaster, said he was disappointed at the reaction to his first offer.
The married father-of-two said yesterday: "This number plate would be of considerable value to my family.
"I am now writing to Mr Catherall with a formal offer of £250,000 cash.
"My 69-year-old father, also called Charlie, already owns CB9 but CB1 would obviously be far better.
"We would put it on a Rolls-Royce or a Range Rover.
"There is no obvious significance to CB1 as a Blackburn with Darwen number plate and I would happily supply a suitable alternative featuring BB or BwD as a substitute on top of the money.
"Knowing of the The Beatles' '4,000 holes in Blackburn Lancashire', I did some research into the state of the roads in the borough.
"I am prepared to arrange for an asphalting firm I deal with to fill up that number of potholes to council standards as an alternative.
"This is a serious offer.
"My view is the plate is not helping anyone sitting on the mayor’s car.”
When the CB registration was allocated to Blackburn after number plates were introduced in 1904, the first 50 went to council vehicles.
CB1 was given to a dustbin lorry but in recent decades has been on the mayoral car including a BMW and the current black Audi A6.
“Once you’ve bagged that number plate – if it’s a good one it adds value to it. Some are iconic and will be sought after. Some of the best are simple but exquisite.”
The biggest went for £180,000 in May last year – for KR15 HNA – which was a new British record for the most expensive current style personalised registration plate.
Today, plates with just one number and two letters cost an estimated £60,000, 20 times more than the early 1990s, when drivers could expect to pay somewhere between £3,000 to £5,000.
A DVLA spokesman said: “Many people enjoy displaying a personalised registration number and the general sale and auctions remain extremely popular with the public.
“Since we began selling personalised registrations we have raised around £2.3 billion and all the money raised is passed to the Treasury.”
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