Private Hire Vehicles cannot ply for hire in the street or at taxi ranks. Journeys must be pre-booked, normally by phone or in person at a cab office. Failure to do so is an offence and invalidates the vehicle's insurance cover. Fares for private hire vehicles are not regulated by the Council - the cost of a journey will normally be based on a rate per mile or should be agreed with the company before the journey.
Private Hire Vehicles licensed by the Council must display a yellow plate on the rear and a smaller internal sign. Roof signs are optional. Private Hire drivers must also wear an ID badge issued by the Council, which includes his/her photograph.
There are many different laws affecting proprietors and vehicles but the main Acts of Parliament covering the licensing of Private Hire Vehicles are contained in Part II of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.
Vehicles must comply with the following conditions:
Private Hire Vehicle Conditions
What information must you provide to us?
Vehicle registration document - we cannot process your application without seeing this document.
MOT Certificate (if applicable).
Policy or cover note of insurance covering the vehicle for 'public and/or private use' for you and/or your drivers
Evidence that your vehicle is mechanically suitable. Your vehicle must have passed an MOT test within the previous 7 days (unless the vehicle is brand new). The vehicle will also be subject to a visual inspection carried out by an authorised Licensing Officer of the Council.
That you have an efficient and approved fire extinguisher (CE marked) suitable for use on motor vehicles.
That the appropriate fee is paid, £145, refundable plate deposit £20 (2016-17)
Once a vehicle is licensed as a Private Hire Vehicle it can only be driven by a person holding a Private Hire Vehicle driver's licence.