Devon Flag Could Replace EU Flag On Number Plates
The Devon flag could be used to replace EU stars on number plates after Brexit if two Westcountry MPs get their way in a debate being held in the House of Commons today.
Some British motorists are already using stickers and black tape to cover up the European Union blue and gold stars flag.
The DVLA has said it is 'too early to say' what will happen now that the UK has voted to leave the EU, heightening confusion about what will happen when the new registration numbers come out in September.
Now two Conservative Cornish MPs, Scott Mann and Derek Thomas, are supporting plans to replace the EU banner with local flags, including the distinctive Cornish St Piran's black flag or the green flag of Devon.
Under current laws, it's illegal to do so on licences or plates.
The Department for Transport said: "Until exit negotiations are concluded, the UK remains a full member of the EU and all the rights and obligations of EU membership remain in force."
The DVLA said that it's "a customer's choice as to whether or not to have a flag on their number plate".
Meanwhile, motorists across the country have decided to by-pass the confusion and manually remove the EU flags or replace them with Union flag stickers.
Covering up the EU part of the number plate isn't in itself an offence, but in general tampering with a number plate is very ill-advised.Alex Garner, road traffic law specialist at Stephensons law firm
Another said: 'Just ordered my Union flag stickers to replace EU flag on number plate (only noticed it today o'wise would have done it ages ago) #Brexit.'
But traffic law specialists have voiced concern that these motorists could be risking potential prosecution and a massive fine.
'The regulations with a number plate are very descriptive, so they have clear permitted fonts, sizes, that sort of thing,' Alex Garner, road traffic law specialist at Stephensons law firm said.
'Any attempt to cover up part of the registration number itself would absolutely be an offence.
'With covering up the flags, you have to be careful not to interfere with the visibility of the registration number. So using a reflective material like duct tape could interfere with a speed camera flash for example, or using a black masking tape in a thin strip could look like a '1' or an 'L'.
How popular any name or initial it contains is: You are more likely to get good money for a registration plate that spells out a name like 5UE than you are with a more unusual name, simply because there is more demand for Sue (or Dave or Mel) than there would be for Hector, Primrose or Zebedee
How valuable the letters and numbers the plate contains are: in terms of numbers, lower numbers with fewer digits tend to be the most valuable when reselling personalised number plates, making BOB 1 more valuable than BOB 379. Sequential numbers (123, 456 etc.) and repeated numbers (444, 88) are more popular than random combinations, and special occasion numbers like 18 and 21 can also boost a number plate’s value a little. In terms of the letters in a number plate, the likelihood of a series of letters being a name or a person’s initials increases the value of the plate, too.
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