Police number-plate sold for £243,000

A number-plate bearing the first car registration number issued in North Yorkshire has been sold for £243,000.

The AJ1 plate was first used in 1907 by the chief constable of the then North Riding Constabulary, Maj Sir Robert Bowyer.

It has continued to be used by the North Yorkshire force for a century.

The sale was approved by the county’s police, fire and crime commissioner Julia Mulligan in agreement with the current chief constable.

“The historical link of the AJ1 registration is important to North Yorkshire,” she said.

However, she added that the money would “be better spent”, explaining that the cash from the sale would be invested in two separate projects.

The first will be to support work improving the Memorial Garden in the middle of North Yorkshire Police’s headquarters at Alverton Court in Northallerton.

The second project will focus on community road safety, with a new AJ1 fund, Ms Mulligan added.

The plate was first registered on 6 December 1907 and placed on Sir Robert’s single-cylinder Argyll car.

Wilsons Auctions, based in Belfast, said that the plate had attracted a lot of attention, partly because, unusually, it had not passed through a lot of owners.

The auction house said it was not able to disclose the name of the buyer.

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