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How can I get back my old personalised registration plate?

I bought a registration from the DVLA 12 years ago and then went overseas and didn’t pay retention fees. How can I go about getting the number back from DVLA? They seem very uncooperative.

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You might not be able to. Obviously if it has been sold to someone else you can't have it unless you can locate that person which will be difficult under GDPR. But if the plate is available on the DVLA's books you can lease it back here:
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