A businessman has turned down a multi-million-pound offer to buy his beloved F1 number plate.

Afzal Kahn paid a record-breaking £440,000 for the plate in January 2008 which he bought from Essex County Council.

But Mr Khan, who owns luxury vehicle company Khan Design in Canal Road, flat out refused the recent offer, reported to be more than £6m.

He believes the plate will only increase in value.

The F on the plate represents cars registered in Essex, with F1 being the first plate to be issued by the Essex County Register of Motors in 1904.

The Council spent the money on a Pass Plus driving scheme to develop the skills of young people.

Yesterday a spokesman for Mr Khan’s company was tight-lipped about whom the offer had come from or when, but confirmed it was a huge offer.

He said: “We have received a significant multi-million pound offer for the F1 plate which we rejected out of hand.

“Mr Kahn has no interest in selling F1, which is his favourite plate.

“Cherished number plates, unlike property or other investments, tend not to fluctuate in value, they only go up.

“It really shouldn’t be a shock to people that the number plate is worth millions of pounds.”

Speaking in 2008 when he bought the plate, Mr Khan said: “I am privileged to have acquired such a prestigious plate.

“I am happy the money raised from the sale will help improve road safety and through the training of young drivers.”

Mr Khan paid £375,000 for the plate, which with VAT, added up to £440,625. The price beat the previous record of £331,000 paid by a Cheshire businessman in July 2006 for the M1 plate.

The F1 plate is listed on the company’s website alongside ones for sale including 4HRH at £250,000 and 00 77 at £54,167. F1 is listed as “price on application”.