Businessman Paul is the new IIT man

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Kinsley businessman Paul Sweeting is always on the lookout for a novel way of attracting customers to his removals company and a few months ago he hit on the idea of personalising his fleet of vehicles.

The first to catch his eye were MOV 11T and MOV 11T, very appropriate for removal vans. These were followed by GET 11T, GET 11T then TRY 11T, TRY 111T, ERN 11T and ERN 111T.

Once he caught the bug he decided to change the whole fleet to make them ageless and managed to secure HAD 11T, JAK 11T, JOG 11T as well as a host of others.

Paul’s habit of collecting numberplates does not come cheap. He has spent many thousands of pounds on his 22 plates with individual numberplates costing between £2,000 to £9,000 and he’s travelled up and down the country attending auctions.

Paul, 60, the managing director of Shires Removal Group said: “I first bought a personalised registration – N11 SEY – back in 1996. That was followed up with N111 SEY and together they’ve made a great pairing. While I’ve added to them over the years, it only dawned on me recently the real tangible benefit they can bring to my business.”

“After scouring the auction catalogues I was drawn to the 11T numbers and set about building up my portfolio.”

He’s generously treated various members of his family to personalised registrations: his horticulturist daughter Caroline got POT 111T, swiftly followed by POT 111T, a perfect pairing for a snooker ace if she ever wanted to sell them.

His youngest daughter Lesley Anne, got a special 30th birthday present of LES 30 and his son Christopher as co-director of the company sports OWN 111T. Paul of course, as managing director, has OWN 11T.

After revamping the fleet Paul can now look forward to semi-retirement and his forthcoming wedding to Lynne in August. Their wedding car will be Lynne’s Mercedes which strangely enough has the numberplate KISSX.

He’s stopped collecting for the time being – he’s run out of vehicles but that’s not to say he won’t start up again.

Now he’s sowed the seeds of a retirement plan he is wrestling with the notion of possibly moving into the world of trading personalised registrations.