Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Driver Licence Update
Following the Department of Transports’ issuing of the Statutory Taxi & Private Hire Vehicle Standards, from the 1 April 2023 all applicants for the granting of a new, or the renewal of a Rushcliffe Borough Council Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Driver licence, will be required to pass the Councils’ approved proficiency test for spoken English, or alternatively provide proof of their exemption for the requirement, e.g. evidence of passing an equivalent English test with another Licensing Authority or possessing a relevant educational qualification.
Further details of acceptable educational qualifications will follow shortly together with links to the appropriate websites.
The Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy 2020-2025 and Government guidance on Safeguarding
The Government published guidance in relation to Taxis/PHV & Operators which Rushcliffe as a Licensing Authority has to have regard to and consider in any licensing policy. As a result of this guidance the policy has been updated and approved by council committee on the 3 December 2020 following public consultation. Following further introduction of legislation and policy changes affecting the regulation of taxis/drivers and operators the policy has been amended to keep it up to date. The policy updates were approved by delegated powers by the Director - Neighbourhoods and Deputy Chief Executive on the 20 May 2022 and again in March 2023. The current policy is available in the documents section below and will apply to all new and existing licences.
The driver of a Hackney Carriage that is standing for hire (that is at a taxi rank or elsewhere on the highway) can only refuse a hiring for a journey within the district if they have a reasonable excuse (section 53 Town Police Clauses Act 1847 ("the 1847 Act" outside London; section 35 London Hackney Carriage Act 1831 and section 7 London Hackney Carriage Act 1853 in London)).
Any drivers which suspect a potential passenger has symptoms of Coronavirus must be extremely careful before making the decision to refuse a journey on these grounds.
There is no requirement placed upon a Hackney Carriage driver who is plying for hire (i.e. cruising) to respond to any hailing by a prospective passenger (see Hunt v Morgan  2 All ER 1065 QBD).
Private Hire Vehicles
A Private Hire operator is under no obligation to enter into a contract to provide a private hire vehicle for anybody, provided any such refusal is not based on a protected characteristic under The Equality Act 2010.
Once a booking is been accepted, there is a contract in place to provide a vehicle for that hiring.
Should the Private Hire Vehicle driver have concerns that a passenger is displaying symptoms of Coronavirus, they should discuss their concerns with the operator.
The contract for hire is between the hirer and the operator, however there is also a contract between the operator and the driver which will also need to be considered.
A pre-booked Hackney Carriage is similar to this, but the contract may have been made directly with the driver rather than a third-party booking agent.
Please contact our Licensing teams with any queries by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Taxi Licensing General Information
There are over 400 licensed taxis (including hackney carriages and private hire vehicles) currently operating in Rushcliffe. See the Governments statistics on the number and types of taxis and PHV licenced here, locally and in the country.
Personal safety advice
Remember, if you just hail a Private Hire vehicle without pre-booking it you will not be cover by any insurance and the driver himself is committing an offence, and in doing so if caught may lose his licence. Always pre-book a Private Hire vehicle or hail one of our Hackney Carriages. All Rushcliffe Hackney Carriages are black London style vehicles and not saloon cars.
Hackney carriage taxi rank
When you need a taxi you could use our hackney carriage taxi ranks in West Bridgford. They're located outside the Co-op on Bridgford Road, opposite the library car park, at any time of the day or evening, or on Central Avenue outside Central News from 7 pm to 7 am.
Private hire licensed operators
Alternatively, plan ahead and book a private hire taxi from a licensed firm or carry their telephone number with you. Always make sure the taxi has licensed plates at the front and back and the driver has identification. The driver will confirm the name you booked the taxi under.
Using a licensed taxi by booking in advance or using the taxi rank means:
- The vehicle will have met specified standards
- The driver is a fit and proper person
- The vehicle is insured
- You can agree on a price at the start of the journey.
Types of taxi vehicles
Two types of taxis operate under license within the Borough:
- Hackney carriages have an illuminated roof sign
- Hackney carriages have a meter set to The Council's correct tariff
- Hackney carriages display the table of fares inside
- Hackney carriages can be flagged down for fares
- Vehicles bear a Red Licence plate and the Rushcliffe R's on the front doors.
Private hire vehicles
- Private hire vehicles must be booked in advance with a licensed Private Hire Operator
- These vehicles bear a green licence plate which is displayed on the front and rear of the vehicle also on the windscreen on the interior of the vehicle
- Vehicle must display side panels indicating the Private Hire company they are working for where the Private Hire Operator supplies such panels
Taxi driver checks
All taxi drivers in Rushcliffe undergo a series of checks and tests to ensure they are a 'fit and proper' before they qualify for a licence:
- The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) use their disclosure service to search an individual's criminal record to establish whether or not they are a safe person to drive members of the public
- The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) check the individual's driving history
- A medical examination ensures the individual is physically able to carry out the work required of a licensed driver. This may involve lifting heavy objects such as luggage and possibly people's wheelchairs
- Individuals undergo a knowledge test designed to find out whether they are capable of driving in a safe manner to a number of locations throughout Rushcliffe
- Local authority checks/NR3 examine individuals previously licensed with another local authority and ensures individuals have not had a drivers licence revoked or suspended
- All drivers under go Vulnerable Persons Safeguarding Training course
- All drivers must wear their drivers badge at all times
If you have a complaint about a Rushcliffe vehicle or driver you can contact our Customers Services on 0115 9819911 or e-mail email@example.com. Please provide us with as much information as possible, including:
- Your name and contact details
- Details of the journey including date, times and locations
- Details of the vehicle including licence or registration number, type of vehicle, i.e. Hackney Carriage or saloon car and details of the driver, i.e. their badge number.
If your complaint is urgent and you feel there is a risk to public safety you should contact the Police in the normal way.
Driving in Clean Air Zones
Information about driving in clean air zones is available on the Clean Air Zone vehicle checker.