A COUNCILLOR has made a formal complaint about the sale of an historic number plate by the Police and Crime Commissioner.

Cllr Clive Smith, of Malvern Town Council, filed a complaint with the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) on Tuesday, although the IPCC do not have jurisdiction over the Commissioner

He believes the 'AB 1' number plate was undersold by John Campion, who secured a reported £160,000 for the registration.

The director of a licence plate dealer claimed he had a client who would pay up to £250,000 for the item, but he did not make an offer in time.

'AB 1' was the first registration issued to the county and was traditionally used on the staff cars of Worcestershire's Chief Constables.

Retired officers criticised Mr Campion for his decision to sell the plate, which some see as a piece of police heritage.

Former Chief Constable Paul West now owns the registration and has reassured officers that it is safe in his hands.

Cllr Smith said: "I think adequate scrutiny measures should be put in place.

"My main concern is that it's been sold under market value by up to £90,000.

"Why it was taken off Brightwells [auctioneers] I don't know. The commissioner subsequently decided that the force would market it themselves rather than the auction house as was originally the case.

"I strongly feel that this matter should be thoroughly investigated not only to endorse the reputation and integrity of John Campion but that of the recently retired Chief Constable who purchased the number plate.

"I am told that there is such a body as the Police Complaints Panel when it comes to issues regarding crime commissioners but I have been unable to find any contact details.

"There seems, on the face of it, to be a systematic failure in the current set up when it comes to transparency."

The PCC announced that the plate had been sold on Thursday, August 11, which was 21 days after the deal was agreed.

This delay was due to the time it took to carry out standard financial checks.