A metal detectorist has unearthed one of the earliest car tax discs – dating back almost exactly 100 years.

Chris Langston, 50, found the hand-sized circular metal case while scouring an old Victorian bottle tip in Oswestry.

His metal detector buzzed and after digging around a foot down into the earth, Chris pulled out the rusty holder.

Chris cleaned the broken glass front which revealed the paper disc with the date it expired and the official stamp showing the place where it was issued.

Amazingly, despite having faded over the decades, the stamp revealed the tax expired on December 31, 1924.

It would have been issued a year earlier on December 31, 1923, and would have cost the motorist £1 for every horsepower their car engine produced.

Border Counties Advertizer: Chris Langston with one of his finds.Chris Langston with one of his finds. (Image: South West News Service)

After his discovery on Sunday (3/12) Chris, who is from Oswestry, researched the history of the disc and discovered it was probably for a Model T Ford.

He said: “I was out detecting near an old Victorian bottle dump and my detector pinged so I dug down and pulled out this metal lump.


“It was covered in mud but when I carefully brushed away the dirt I could see a broken glass circle.

“I realised it was obviously a very old tax disc but I was desperate to know what car it was for.

"I basically went down a complete rabbit hole of tax discs and discovered it was one of the first ever issued.

"I could see a letter F in the vehicle description box. I've checked, and the only F vehicles around in 1923 were Model T Fords.

Border Counties Advertizer: The 100-year-old tax discThe 100-year-old tax disc (Image: SWNS)

"I could just about make out the horsepower which was 20.

“My research revealed that back in 1923 drivers were charged at £1 per horsepower according to an RAC calculation.

“It means this disc was likely to have cost about £20 at the time which was certainly not cheap and would be over a £1,000 in today's money.

“How it turned up here is anyone’s guess but it is an old dump so the car may have been scrapped or the disc lost but it’s incredible to find it almost exactly a century after it was issued.”

The UK tax disc system was launched in 1921 and the government stopped issuing them in 2014.

Chris is planning to display the disc in a local museum before selling it - and thinks it could fetch hundreds of pounds.

He said: “They are worth quite a bit and I think I could get a few hundred pounds for it.”