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Last Updated: Friday, 25 January 2008, 12:23 GMT
F1 car plate sells for record fee
F1 number plate
The council's number plate was on sale for three years
A record has been set after the sale of a 104-year-old number plate bearing the registration F1 fetched 375,000.

The registration number was sold to businessman Afzal Kahn, of Kahn Design Ltd, by Essex County Council.

The council has held the plate since it was first issued in 1904, when the county became a licensing authority, and it has been on sale since 2004.

The UK's previous record for a registration plate was M1 which sold for 331,000.

Money from the sale will go towards the education and training of young drivers in the county, the council said.

'Essex history'

The plate was first registered in 1904 when it belonged to the county surveyor of Essex. It has remained in the possession of the county council ever since.

Andrew Johnstone is thought to have been the first chairman to use the plate on his four-seater Panhard Levassor in 1904.

Lord Hanningfield, council leader, said: "It will be with some sadness that we will be losing this little piece of Essex history.

"But we have sold it at a time when such number plates are reaching very high sale prices on the market and we have reached a deal which breaks all previous records."

Mr Kahn, an automotive designer, said: "I am privileged to have acquired such a prestigious plate.

"I am extremely happy the money raised from the sale will help improve road safety through the training of young drivers."

Businessman Afzal Khan paid thousands of pounds for the number plate


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