Taxi & Private Hire Licences

Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Licensing

Welcome to the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire section of East Cambridgeshire District Council.

The Licensing Authority of East Cambridgeshire District Council is responsible for licensing persons who wish to work in the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire trade within the Council's district boundary, although once licensed bookings may be accepted from outside of the district boundary.

The primary purpose of the legislation that controls the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire trade is to protect members of the general public from using unsafe vehicles driven by unsuitable persons.

In order to accomplish this the Council issues driver licences, vehicle licences, and Private Hire Operator licences.

Public Consultation - Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy

The Council consulted on a new updated Hackney Carriage and Private Hire licensing policy to provide guidance to all parties on how to apply for a licence, and how licences will be enforced. The consultation process closed on Wednesday 27 September 2017. 

The full proposed policy document including an overview of the proposals can be found on the link below.

Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy - for consultation

All comments received during the consultation process will be considered by Members of the Licensing Committee on Wednesday 8 November 2017 at 9:30am. 

For more information on how to apply for a licence click on the links below:

Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 makes it an offence for a driver to refuse to carry an assistance dog, or to charge more for doing so. It also enables a Council to maintain a list of approved wheelchair accessible vehicles. If a Council chooses to maintain this list, it also becomes an offence for the driver to refuse to carry a wheelchair bound passenger, or to charge more for doing so, or to refuse to offer reasonable mobility assistance before, during and after the journey, when using one of these vehicles to fulfil a booking.

The Council passed a resolution on 26th June 2017 to maintain a list of wheelchair accessible vehicles, and this list can be found on the link below. 

Although not an offence under the Equality Act 2010, it is considered a breach of licence conditions for the driver of a vehicle not on the designated list to refuse to carry a wheelchair bound passenger where it is safe to do so in their vehicle, or to charge more, or to fail to provide reasonable assistance.

It is also considered a breach of licence conditions for all parties involved in a booking if they refuse to carry a wheelchair bound passenger where it is safe to do so, or to charge more for doing so, or to fail to provide reasonable assistance, or to refuse to carry an assistance dog, or to charge more for doing so.

If a driver is exempted from any of these provisions they will display a prescribed sign on the vehicle's window. Examples of what to look out for can be found in the document below.

Immigration Act 2016

The Immigration Act 2016 places a duty on the Council to ensure that no person obtains a Hackney Carriage or Private Hire driver and operator licence if they do not have a legal right to work in the UK. Upon first application (and upon first renewal after 1st December 2016 for existing licence holders) applicants will be required to prove their right to work in the UK by supplying one of the official documents listed in the document below. The applicant must be present when the document is supplied, it is not possible for the document to be presented by another person. A copy of the document will be retained in order at the instruction of the Home Office.

Also, please note, if you provide a document from list B you will be required to produce proof of right to work upon all future renewal dates.

Hackney Carriage & Private Hire policy

The Council has also produced a Hackney Carriage and Private Hire guide to offer assistance to anyone involved in operating and driving Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles.  This guide sets out as simply as possible the necessary procedures for obtaining a licence. Potential applicants are strongly advised to read this guide before completing any application forms. The guide can be found by clicking the link below:

Taxi & Private Hire Guide - June 2017

Hackney Carriage & Private Hire fees

Fees for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire licensing

Market Street Taxi Rank

Following the public consultation regarding a proposal to extend the existing Market Street taxi rank in Ely forwards to the junction of High Street Back, Members of the Licensing Committee considered the responses to this consultation on Wednesday 17 May 2017.

As a result of this process Members resolved to recommend to Council an alternative option. The image below illustrates the impact on the street scene of this alternative option. Council considered the recommendation made by the Licensing Committee at its July meeting, and agreed. Officers have been instructed to undertake the necessary steps to amend the street scene.