Taxi CarThe Licensing Authority
We have a statutory duty to license vehicles and drivers who wish to become members of the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire trade within the district of St Albans.

These powers are granted under two Acts:

    • Town Police Clauses Act 1847
    • Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976

TAXI LICENSING-REVIEW OF CONVICTIONS POLICY

Our Convictions Policy first came into effect in 2007. The policy was last revised in 2016 and should be revised every 5 years.

The consultation period will commence on Tuesday 16th October 2018 and will continue for 8 weeks ending at midnight on Tuesday 11th December 2018.

This is your opportunity to raise any issues you may have and contribute to the formation of the Council's Statement of Licensing Policy.

All responses during the consultation will be considered and incorporated into the Policy where appropriate.  A summary of all responses will be included in the Report to Elected Members during the Committee process.  The final Policy will be determined by the Elected Members.

Please note that where responses include personal details in the body of the response this information may be subject to publication or disclosure. 

All the responses to the consultation must be received by Tuesday 11th December 2018.

Address: 

Licensing Section

Community Services Department

St Albans City and District Council

St Peter’s Street

St Albans

Herts 

AL1 3JE

Tel: 01727 819454

Email: licensing@stalbans.gov.uk

If you have any queries with regard to this matter please contact the licensing section on the number above.

Types of licence

    • drivers
    • vehicles
    • operators

Application packs
You can download the application packs from this page using the links in the downloads section. The driver application requires the completion of the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) application form, that is only issued by ringing the Licensing Section at St Albans Council on: 01727 296164.

Drivers
The drivers licence is commonly referred to as the 'badge'. This will only be issued to drivers who have met the licensing criteria laid out in the 'Drivers Application Pack'. A licence is issued for a period of 3 years or less.

Vehicle
The vehicle licence is normally referred to as a 'plate'. The 'Vehicle Application Pack' details the criteria vehicles must comply with to be licensed. A licence is issued for a period of 1 year or less.

Operator
The operator licence is issued to an individual or company that offers a service of pre-booking fares. This can be done by telephone or by application form and is relevant for both hackney carriage and private hire companies / drivers. A licence is issued for 5 years.

Please note appointment days are only on a Tuesday or Wednesday.

The Equality Act 2010

Section 165 of the Equality Act 2010 imposes duties upon the drivers of designated vehicles when dealing with disabled passengers travelling in wheelchairs or a person who wishes to be accompanied by a disabled person in a wheelchair. Those duties are set out in Section 165(4) as follows:

• to carry to passenger whilst in the wheelchair;

• not to make any additional charge for doing so;

• if the person chooses to sit in a passenger seat, to carry the wheelchair;

• to take such steps as are reasonably necessary to ensure that the passenger is carried in safety and reasonable comfort; and

• to give the passenger such mobility assistance as is reasonably required.

Section 165(7) of the Act creates an offence where the driver of a designated taxi or private hire vehicle fails to comply with a duty imposed upon them under the section. This is punishable on summary conviction by a fine not exceeding scale 3 on the standard scale (currently £1,000)

Section 166 of the Act makes provision for licensing authorities to issue exemptions to drivers where they are satisfied it is appropriate to do so:

• On medical grounds; or

• On the ground that the person’s physical conditions makes it impossible or unreasonably difficult for the person to comply with those duties.

A driver will only be exempt therefore if an exemption certificate has been issued and notice of exemption issued by the Council is exhibited on the vehicle in the prescribed manner. There is currently 1 driver(s) with an exemption(s).

Vehicles shown on this list are known to be capable of carrying a wheelchair of maximum size 120x70cm and max combined weight (passenger and chair) of 300kg. Some may be capable of carrying larger or heavier wheelchairs. However, this will be at the discretion of the driver.

If you feel that a driver has acted unlawfully by refusing to carry you please email licensing@stalbans.gov.uk  the following details:

• vehicle make

• plate number (found on the rear of the vehicle)

• if possible, the driver’s badge number.

Please note that the vehicles listed on the document below are those which can carry a person who remains seated in their wheelchair.

The contact list which includes Hackney Carriage Drivers that can be contacted directly by customers who require a Wheelchair Accessible Taxi has been revised; please see the below. 

If you are a driver of a Wheelchair Accessible Taxi and you would like to be placed on the list, please contact Ema Goldner on 01727 296164 or email licensing@stalbans.gov.uk

What to do if Lost Property is found in a Taxi

If you have lost or found property in a taxi, please send us an email to licensing@stalbans.gov.uk wih the following details

Name, Address,Telephone Number, Email Address, Date of loss, Time, Journey From and to, Details of Lost Property, Details of Taxi (plate number, company, colour, badge number)
Taxi operators do not deal with missing property and it is the responsibility of every taxi driver to check their vehicle at the end of their shift.
Please note - Taxi drivers must bring all lost property to reception at our offices in St Peters Street, St Albans.
When a passenger contacts the council by telephone about lost property, an officer will make out a report. He or she will ask you for:
• your name and address;
• your contact telephone number;
• the date and approximate time you were in the taxi;
• the name of the taxi firm you used;
• whether the taxi was booked or flagged down;
• a detailed description of all the items missing.
An officer will contact you if your property is handed into the council. We will then arrange for you to come in to collect the items and sign to say you have collected your property. You will need to show identification before we hand over your property.
Please note:
Taxi drivers check their vehicles at the end of a shift and therefore other customers may have found your missing property and kept it without the knowledge of the driver. Unfortunately, this is extremely hard to prove and therefore there is no guarantee that your items will be found and returned to you.

Deregulation Act 2015 – Changes to Private Hire Sub Contracting

What are the changes?

Since 1st October 2015 Private Hire Operators have been allowed to subcontract bookings to Private Hire Operators licensed in other council areas. Previously they were only permitted to subcontract to other Private Hire Operators in the same council area as them. 

This is the only change that has been made.  There isnogeneral relaxation allowing any driver or vehicle to work anywhere in the UK. 

Where a booking has been subcontracted, it must be completed by a vehicle and driver licensed by the same council as the operator who has received the subcontracted booking.

For example, if a Watford based operator subcontracts a booking to a St Albans operator, the booking must be carried out by a driver and vehicle licensed by St Albans City and District Council. If a St Albans based operator sub-contracts a booking to a Watford operator, the booking must be carried out by a driver and vehicle licensed by Watford Borough Council. 

If you are licensed as a private hire driver by St Albans City and District Council, you may only take bookings given to you by a licensed St Albans operator. St Albans private hire drivers can only drive private hire vehicles licensed by St Albans City and District Council - this remains unchanged. You may not go and work for operators in other areas without a licence from that Local Authority.

If you are a St Albans licensed Private Hire Operator, you may subcontract work to, and accept subcontracted work from, licensed Private Hire Operators in other districts.  If you do so you must record the full details in your records for each individual booking. 

However, for bookings in St Albans District you mayonly give them directly to drivers and vehicles licensed in St Albans District. You may not give St Albans District bookings directly to drivers licensed by other councils.  

Transport for London (TFL) vehicles and UBER vehicles

Transport for London (TFL) vehicles and UBER vehicles are allowed to come into the District to collect or drop off pre-booked jobs. The Council is currently working with Transport for London on this issue. During enforcement checks any TFL or UBER vehicles that are found in the District without pre-booked jobs are advised to go back to the area that they are licensed. We have found that the amount of TFL and UBER vehicles in the District has declined due to this increased enforcement by the Council and the Police.
Should you wish to report or discuss any issues please contact the Specialist Licensing Officer on 01727 296164.

Contact Details

Licensing Authority, St Albans City and District Council, Civic Centre, St Peters Street, St Albans, Herts AL1 3JE. Tel: 01727 296164. Fax: 01727 819433. Email: licensing@stalbans.gov.uk

Date of last review: 16 October 2018