Taxi licensing

Buckinghamshire Council are responsible for the licensing and enforcing of Taxi Licences.

*Important Notice – Aylesbury Vale Area*

Vehicles

Due to the extraordinary circumstances as a result of COVID-19, the Council’s vehicle testing station at Pembroke Road remains closed and Enhanced Vehicle Inspections (EVI) have been suspended.  The Council is continuing to accept valid MOT certificates provided by an external testing station for vehicles licence renewals, and replacement vehicles such as insurance vehicles,  until the Council testing station reopens.   We continue to require licensed vehicles to have a satisfactory MOT at least every 12 months.  All vehicles issued licences without an EVI will be required to attend for an inspection once we are able to resume these inspections.  All licence renewal applications must continue to be submitted in good time, with a recently issued MOT pass certificate (within the previous month),  before the current licence expires to ensure continuation of the vehicle licence.  We will accept new applications however these will not be issued until such time as we are able to perform satisfactory EVIs.

Please note that while we recognise these are difficult times for everyone, we believe it is important that vehicle standards are maintained and we are unable to relax vehicle requirements such as vehicle age policies.  Likewise, vehicles still being used for work must be appropriately insured.

Drivers

We are continuing to accept vehicle driver applications, however new applications will not be issued until we are able to resume face to face interviews.  Drivers applying to renew their licence will be contacted by a member of the licensing team to arrange an online document check.  In recognition of the difficulties faced by many drivers, the Council has agreed to relax the rules for drivers whose licence is due to expire during this period and who are currently not working.  Current drivers may apply for a licence up to 3 months after the expiry of their current licence without the need to undertake a new driver assessment, English language assessment or provide a medical from their GP (this will need to be provided within 3 months of the licence being granted).   Please note that we are unable to relax the rules requiring enhanced DBS checks and drivers applying for a licence after their current expiry date will need to provide a new DBS for verification by Council officers before being able to work.  We recommend that all drivers subscribe to the DBS update service https://www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service

Please note that drivers with limited duration licences due to their immigration status will need to continue to apply to extend their licences. 

Unfortunately we are currently unable to provide exploitation safeguard training but we are working with our training provider to look at alternative solutions.

Operators

Operators can continue to renew their licences and apply for new licences.

Please note that we have delayed issuing licence plates and signs for licensed vehicles and  driver badges for licensed drivers.  We are issuing electronic copies of licences for licensed operators, drivers and vehicles.  Copies of the current licence must be made available on request, either as a printed copy or electronically.  All licence holders must continue to renew their licences at the appropriate time in order to legally continue to work.

Important changes to taxi and private hire licensing in 2019

The Council is making a number of important changes to the licensing arrangements in respect of taxi and private hire drivers:

Explotation Safeguard Training - All licensed drivers are required to attend the Council's approved safeguard training. New drivers will not be granted a licence until they have successfully attended the training. 

The next training available session will take place online via Zoom, on Friday, 22 May 2020.  Sessions are at 10:00, 12:30 or 15:30.  To book simply text 07535 440 796 with your name, driver’s number, date and time you wish to attend.  Important, please include an email address so we can send you your training invitation.

English Language Testing - From 1 March 2019 all applicants for new driver's licences will be required to demonstrate adequate English language skills.

Additional Knowledge Testing - From 1 March 2019 all applicants for new driver's licence will be tested on their understanding of the rules and regulations relating to taxi/private hire work and their ability to navigate as part of their driver's assessment.

National Register of Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Driver Licence Refusals and Revocations (NR3) - From 1 March 2019 the Council will begin using the NR3. This means that from this date all applicants for hackney carriage and private hire driver licences (new and renewal) will be checked on the register. Where an existing licence is revoked or an application refused, this will be recorded on the register. For further information please refer to the information on Taxi Policy