Applying for a licence to drive a Private Hire or Hackney Carriage Vehicle
Those wishing to apply for a new licence to drive either a private hire or hackney carriage vehicle are advised to read our guidance document to understand the relevant process and the stages.
You can not hold a licence unless you have:
- The right to work in the UK.
- A UK driving licence.
- Been licensed to drive a car for at least 3 years;
There are some limited exemptions for an applicant who has driven for less than 3 years or does not have a UK DVLA licence. Please consult the Council's Policy or contact the Licensing team.
You must download, complete and submit to us the application form. As part of the application process you will:
We will then arrange a face to face interview with you where we will check your original documents and ensure you have a sufficient understanding of the obligations on you as a licence holder.
Prior to submitting the application you will need to provide us with a number of documents and certificates listed. We will not process an application that does not include all of the required documents. You must pay for your application when you submit it - we will not process it without payment.
Required certificates and documentation
Before completing your application form you will need to ensure that you have the following documents to submit (these are explained in more detail below):
- Identity documentation
- 2 Passport photographs
- Advanced Taxi Driving assessment
- Safeguarding Course (online)
- Medical Certificate (from your GP)
- Certificate of conduct (if applicable)
You will need to prove your identity by providing us with a number of identity documents. This is used to verify that you are who you say are, allow us to ensure you have the right entitlements and carry out the relevant criminal record check.
The easiest set of documents to provide us with are:
- Passport / Biometric residents permit
- DVLA driving licence
- A bank statement or utility bill issued within the last 3 months.
There are however other documents we can accept if you do not have the above, such as a birth certificate or an immigration document. View a full list of acceptable identification documents.
You must provide two full colour passport sized photographs that reflect your current appearance, clearly show your face against a pale background. Glasses or headwear of any kind should not be worn.
Advanced Driving Certificate
You must provide a certificate confirming that your standard of driving is suitable for conveying members of the public around in your vehicle. You can undertake this assessment by booking with one of the following authorised providers:
Taxi assessment - Diamond Advanced Motorists
Taxi Driver Assessments - Green Penny
We have approved both providers as competent to assess its drivers and does not recommend one over the other. Applicants should choose which provider is most suitable for them. There are two types of assessment provided by both companies.
- Standard (all drivers) and
- Enhanced (drivers of wheelchair accessible vehicles only).
The Enhanced assessment is the same as the standard one but with an additional wheelchair assessment. If you intend to drive a WAV or a Hackney Carriage you will need to pass the enhanced assessment. However, the wheelchair assessment can be done separately should you chose to drive a wheelchair accessible vehicle at a later date.
Taxi Safeguarding Course
You must complete a safeguarding course. The course is undertaken virtually via zoom and a certificate is produced upon completion of the course. The content includes training on ‘safeguarding’ issues such as Child Sexual and Criminal Exploitation, Human Trafficking, Modern Slavery and Domestic Abuse, identifying adults at risk and other vulnerable people. The nature of a licensed drivers role in society means that they may convey passengers who are not only vulnerable but in danger. By knowing what warning signs to look out for, licensed drivers can help save lives.
The course length is around three hours, it is conduct online as part of a virtual classroom with other applicants. There is a fee payable directly to the service provider and you should contact them for more details.
You can book this with one of our service providers
Blue Lamp Trust - Safeguarding
Taxi Safeguarding Course - Green Penny
DVLA driving licence
If you have not held a DVLA licence for three years or your licence has not been issued in by the DVLA you may still be allowed to apply but should contact us first by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
When completing your application you will need to provide a DVLA share code which you can obtain here: View or share your driving licence information - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Right to Work
The majority of licensed drivers are self-employed and therefore you must be entitled to work in the UK as a self-employed person. To prove your right to work you are encouraged to obtain a share code online from the government website: Prove your right to work to an employer - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
If you are not able to obtain a share code, or you are a British or Irish citizen, you will need to provide documentary proof. If you do not have the right to work as a self-employed person in the UK and wish to be licensed to work as an employee of a business, further information such as contracts and proof of tax and national insurance contributions from the employer will be needed.
Certificate of Conduct
If you have spent six months or more resident in any country outside of the UK you must provide us with a certificate from that country confirming whether or not you committed any criminal or driving offences in that country. You can find out how to obtain this from this government website: Criminal records checks for overseas applicants - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Medical examination Certificate
You must have a DVLA group 2 medical certificate completed by your own registered GP. The certificate needs to be completed within one calendar month of your application. The form can be downloaded here: Medical Examination Form
You should book an appointment with your GP and take this form to them. We will consider the certificate to only be valid if dated within 1 calendar month of the date you submit your application.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS Check)
Once you have submitted a complete and valid application we will take the information you have provided and apply for an enhanced criminal record disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). The DBS certificate will be issue to you and you must provide that certificate to us within one calendar month.
You must also register the certificate on the DBS update service. www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service .
We may be able to accept a certificate that you have already registered on the update service, provided you can give to us the original copy of that certificate.
Interview and knowledge tests
Once we have received your application we will arrange for an interview with you where we will seek to establish that you are suitable to work as a licensed driver and have sufficient understanding of the rules and conditions that will be applicable to you as a licensed driver. This interview is an informal way of assessing your knowledge without requiring applicants to sit a formal knowledge test.