Telephone numbers

Who can apply for UK telephone numbers?


  1. those operating a Public Electronic Communications Networks (“PECN”); and 
  2. providing Public Communications Services (“PECS”) who have appropriate arrangements with a provider of a PECN,

may apply to Ofcom for UK numbers.

Rules applicable to allocation, adoption and use of numbers

Section B of the General Conditions of Entitlement (Numbering and technical conditions) sets out the rules applicable to the allocation, adoption and use of UK telephone numbers and incorporates by reference the National Telephone Numbering Plan.

Forms and procedure

The National Numbering Scheme provides details of number allocations and availability. Once the provider of a PECN has selected the numbers it requires, a detailed description of the provider’s network as implemented in theUK must be sent to Ofcom. On receipt of this information Ofcom will allow the eligible applicant access to the following numbering forms (details of which can be found in the Plan):

  • Form S1 for Geographic numbers  (Geographic Area Codes beginning 01 and 02);
  • Form S3 for UK Wide Numbers (numbers beginning 03);
  • Form S56 for Location Independent Electronic Communications Service  (numbers beginning 05);
  • Form S7 for Personal Numbering, Radiopaging andMobilenumbers  (numbers beginning 07);
  • Form S8 for Special Services (numbers beginning 08);
  • Form S9 for Special Services At A Premium Rate Application  (numbers beginning 090, 091 & 098);
  • Form S10 for Access Codes (e.g. Directory Enquiry (DQ), Indirect Access, etc.); and
  • Forms S12 to S20 for Codes for port-in, network identification and other administrative purposes.

The following information must be included on the form:

(i) the applicant’s details (including a power of attorney if applicable);

(ii) the communication provider’s details including, in some circumstances, a companies house appointments report and details of each company director;

(iii) the telephone numbers required and details of any other number blocks previously allocated;

(iv) a brief description of the type of PECS for which the telephone numbers applied for will be adopted, and the market to be served by the service;

(v) if this is the first application, a declaration confirming PECN or PECS status including a network diagram detailing the PECN’s interconnection arrangements and details of the PECS provided over that network; and

(vi) if the applicant is a provider of PECS, evidence that reasonable steps have been taken to obtain a sub-allocation of telephone numbers of the type applied for from a provider of a PECN.

Fully completed application forms are sent to Ofcom’s Numbering Unit via email ([email protected]). Ofcom will determine the application or request additional information, if necessary, within three weeks.