Taxis & Taxi Drivers

 

 

You can now apply for the following licenses online:

 

Taxi information sharing update

October 2019

As a Licensing Authority we are shortly going to share information with DEFRA regarding licensed vehicles as required by the Air Quality (Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Database) (England and Wales) Regulations 2019. The regulations have been made to facilitate the collection of data to used for the purposes of improving air quality.

This means that the authority will regularly be required to send details of vehicles that we license in the Arun area. Details sent will include vehicle registrations, plate numbers and if a vehicle is licensed as a Hackney or Private Hire vehicle. We are required to provide this information so that the Secretary of State can maintain a central register of vehicles. Details of vehicle registrations are not released into the public domain by this authority, however this information will be shared with DEFRA in order to comply with the legal requirement.

DEFRA will be the data controller in respect of the information that is going to be collected, processed and held. Arun District Council will ensure that information shared with DEFRA is complete, accurate and up to date. We have been advised that the data will be retained for seven years with historical aggregated data being retained indefinitely for scientific purposes. Aggregated data means information which has been collated for monthly reports.

The information sharing will begin in late 2019.

Further information can be found here:

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2019/885/made

 

 

This page contains everything you need to know about taxis, including information for existing drivers and details of how to apply to become a taxi driver. 

 

Taxi Licensing Newsletter

Taxi Licensing newsletter.pdf [pdf] 3MB

 

Applying to become a driver

The steps you need to take to become an Arun licensed driver are detailed below.

If you have any convictions or cautions of any age spent or unspent you should contact us in the first instant to discuss before you proceed any further.

 

Knowledge Test

You will be required to pass the council’s knowledge test prior to being considered for the grant of a Dual Drivers Licence.

The test will demonstrate that you have a good knowledge of all round aspects of the work of a driver and the district in which you wish to work.

The first test will not be charged. Subsequent tests are charged at £50 payable in advance.

The test is an electronic multiple choice system comprising of 9 categories. In order to pass the knowledge test you must attain a 80% pass mark in each category. The test will be set at a maximum time of 75mins to complete all categories:

  1. Highway Code
  2. Road Signs
  3. Venues 
  4. Roads. These questions will ask you to identify which road joins other roads identified to you.
  5. Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and Safeguarding
  6. Equality and Disability
  7. Numeracy
  8. Byelaws
  9. Fitness. These questions will be related to the physical and mental fitness of taxi drivers.

An example of a question you may be asked will look like this

Knowledge test screenshot

 

  • We recommend as a guide an absolute minimum of 20 hours study time prior to sitting your test.
  • You will need to read and understand our policy as part of your study. This can be found at the top of the page.
  • As part of your study it is recommended you visit areas to obtain a good working knowledge of the district.
  • We recommend you also study maps of the area.
  • Use the internet or local guides to become familiar with key places and destinations.
  • You will need to ensure you are still fully familiar with the Highway Code
  • You will need to be familiar with our Hackney Carriage Byelaws [doc] 48KB
  • Further information about the nine elements of the test can be found in our study pack: V4 knowledge test study pack.docx [docx] 2MB . We strongly recommend you study this. The information in this pack may be updated regularly. We therefore recommend you refer to our website and study pack regularly to check you have the latest version. 
  • The authority may ask to deem it appropriate from time to time to ask drivers to undertake training or knowledge tests in specific areas as a condition of renewal of their licence.

 

Making an application

We ask you not to make an application until you are in a position to attempt your knowledge test. To make an application you will need to attend our Littlehampton offices by appointment. Please contact by email taxis@arun.gov.uk or by calling 01903 737755 and stating that you would like to make an appointment to apply for a taxi drivers licence.

We will send you out an application form, this will need to be completed and brought in with you along with the following documentation:

  • Your full DVLA driving licence. Have held your licence for at least 12 months and have at least 12 months UK driving experience. You must not have accrued any points on your DVLA licence in the preceding 12 months.
  • Passport or birth certificate
  • Passport style photo
  • Proof of address, using either household/utility bill or a bank statement less than three months old on which shows  your name and current address.
  • Details of residence outside Great Britain
  • Household/utility bill or bank statement less than three months old which has your address on it
  • A certificate of good conduct if you have been resident outside of the UK.
    • If an applicant has spent six continuous months or more overseas since
      becoming the age of criminal responsibility (10yrs and over), the licensing authority will expect to see evidence of a criminal record check or certificate of good conduct, not older than 28 days on application, regardless of whether you have previously held a certificate, from the country/countries covering the relevant period before a licence application can be made. If a certificate of good conduct is not provided in written English, the applicant will pay the cost of the translation.
  • You will need to provide us with information relating to your right to work in the UK. Full details can be seen here.
  • When you complete the taxi surgery, you then must make an application for a Disclosure & Barring Service Certificate within 7 days of having the appointment, details can be found below under DBS. We are notified by Personnel Check that you have made an application, if we have not been notified by Personnel Check that you have not made the application within the 7 days any knowledge test that has been booked will be cancelled until such time we have been notified.
  • Drivers assessments and Medicals are to be taken after you have passed the knowledge test. You are reminded that all medicals MUST be carried out by your own GP or practice. If we receive a medical from a surgery or GP where you are not registered the medical will be rejected and you will be required to have a new medical.

You will need to make a payment for your driver application on grant of your licence.

 

DBS check

As part of the application process for a license you are required to have an enhanced DBS. If you already hold an enhanced DBS certificate this can be no older than 28 days on application, we will however accept an enhanced DBS certificate if you are enrolled on the  update service, you will need to bring in the certificate with your application. You will have to apply for your check here https://www.personnelchecks.co.uk/taxis/arun/ prior to coming in to see us and have you ID verified. Payment is required at the time of application. When you paid your subscription your sign up registration can take up to 3 hours to be sent to you. If you think you haven’t received the link to the registration  please check your spam or junk box. Then if you have any queries or questions before or after submitting the payment or form please contact Personal Check 01254 355679.

After you have registered with personal checks we will receive conformation of your registration and you will need to make an appointment to have your ID verified at our Littlehampton offices Please email taxis@arun.gov.uk or call 01903 737755 and ask to speak to the licensing team to make an appointment.

 

Booking your test

When you are ready to take a test email taxis@arun.gov.uk stating you would like to arrange your test.

Tests will be held at the Civic Centre in Maltravers Road, Littlehampton. You will need to bring photographic identification with you. Please note you will not be permitted to use any of the following (and any items must be left turned off and at the front of the room)

  • Electronic devices including mobile phones
  • Study notes or books
  • Anything else deemed unacceptable by the invigilator
  • You must not have anything written on your hands, arms or elsewhere on your person

If you are found to be in possession of any of these items you will be disqualified from the test and not permitted to re-take it.

You will not be permitted to leave the room during your test.

We will provide pens and paper for your use should you require it.

The council’s decision as to whether you have passed the test is final. You will be notified of the results within 48 hours. Should you fail the test and wish to re-take it, we recommend a period of at least four weeks before you re-sit. You must make full application to the council for a licence within six months of passing the test.

 

National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level 2

We have no designated  provider  at this time, therefore you are not required to complete the NVQ unless you wish to do so, but you will have to make your own arrangements.

When a licence has been granted it is considered desirable to undertake a NVQ Level 2 in Road Passenger Vehicle Driving. This is carried out by a training company on behalf of the Licensing Authority and is free to hackney carriage/private hire drivers. You will be expected to complete this course within the first year after getting your licence or to have signed up to the course and to be completed in the second year. 

 

Hackney carriages and private hire vehicles

Hackney carriages are vehicles that can be hailed from a rank or in the street, and can also be pre-booked. Together with their drivers, hackney carriages must be licensed by the local authority. The suitability and safety of vehicles, and the suitability and fitness of drivers can be considered when applications are received. Vehicle and driver licences are annual and extensive conditions apply.

Private hire vehicles do not have a topsign and only make pre-booked journeys. Their licensing provisions are much the same as for hackney carriages, although operators must also be licensed in addition to the driver and the vehicle. Driver licences are subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check to assist councils in assessing whether or not an applicant is a fit and proper person to hold a driver licence. Applicants themselves are required to submit information concerning convictions.

Further details are available in our taxi licensing Policy 2017 v1-4.pdf [pdf] 1MB. If you would like more information about vehicle specifications, please see our MOT inspection manual.doc [doc] 3MB. The garages contracted to conduct the vehicle testing are available in the contracted garages.pdf [pdf] 12KB list. 

 

MPV
  1. Multi person vehicles (MPV’s) will not be licensed by Arun District Council unless the following specifications are met:-
    1. There must be at least five (5) doors on the vehicle which are openable from the inside (offside front; nearside front; offside rear; nearside rear and a “boot” door), double “boot” doors are considered as a single door;
    2. Rear “boot” doors must be signed as “Emergency Exits”;
    3. There must be unrestricted access to the doors of the vehicle, from or to any seat, without the need to remove any seat or operate a lever to lower the back of the seat or tilt the seat forward;
    4. No passenger must be required to climb over more than one other passenger, so as to safely and comfortably leave the vehicle;
    5. The distance in the emergency aisle between the sides of seats or the side of a seat and the vehicle body, must be a minimum of 229mm (9 inches) in width at a measurement of 127mm (5 inches) in height from the floor. The distance in the emergency aisle between sides of seats or the side of a seat and the vehicle body must be a minimum of 279mm (11inches) in width at a height of 1220mm (48 inches) from the floor;
    6. All seats in the vehicle shall be either forward or rear facing. All seats must be fitted with an appropriate and approved seat belt which is in working order;
    7. A copy of the seating arrangements (where applicable) agreed upon annual test, must be kept in the vehicle for inspection by the licensing officer;

B)        There shall be four (4) road wheels;

  1. There shall be sufficient seating capacity to carry up to eight (8) passengers
  2. The size of the seats shall be in accordance with The Road Vehicle (Registration and Licensing) Regulations;
  3. A minimum secured luggage capacity of not less than fourteen (14) cubic feet. The luggage must be safely secured so as not to obstruct, restrict, or cause injury to the occupants of the vehicle.
  4. The vehicle shall be right hand drive only;

If you purchase an MPV and you would like guidance on what is the satisfactory seating arrangement please view:  MPV specification.pdf [pdf] 111KB where you will be able to see guidance notes.

 

For the purposes of this page, we will refer to both hackney carriages and private hire vehicles as taxis.

To operate as a taxi driver you will be required to licence both the vehicle you drive and yourself as an individual.
 

Taxi Driver Licences

Please read the following: Right to work checks for new and existing drivers.pdf [pdf] 385KB

If you would like to drive either a Hackney Carriage or a Private Hire Vehicle in the Arun District, you will need to apply to us for a Dual Driver licence.

Arun District Council dual driver licences will permit you to drive vehicles licensed by Arun only. You must be an Arun licensed driver to drive vehicles licensed by this authority.

New applicants may apply for a one year Driver's licence only.  Thereafter there are options to apply for either one or three year licences, but you should be aware that Medical Reports are needed on first application and then every 5 years from the age of 45 until 65 then annually thereafter, DBS is required on application and then every 3 years thereafter unless you have signed up to the update service which will be offered to you on application.

In order to apply for a Dual Driver licence you must:

  • Hold a full DVLA UK driver's licence
  • Have held your licence for at least 12 months and have at least 12 months UK driving experience
  • You must not have accrued any points on your DVLA licence in the preceding 12 months
  • Have sufficient ability to speak English and to understand spoken English to provide the service for which you wish to be licensed
  • Have adequate literacy and numeracy skills
  • Be a "fit and proper" person

We will establish that you are a "fit and proper" person by asking you to:

  • Provide details of your driving history by allowing the Council access to your DVLA records
  • Provide evidence of your conviction history by completing a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Disclosure form to Enhanced Level.  You will complete this with a member of the team.
  • By passing the knowledge test set by the council.
  • Pass a Driving Assessment test.  The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency is no longer undertaking taxi driver assessments. We use 1st Castle on 01243 867502. Please contact them to arrange your driver's assessment test.  Do not book a Driving Assessment test until after you have passed the Knowledge Test.
  • Undergo a rigorous medical examination, carried out by your own doctor, to the DVLA Group II medical standards. Medical Reports are needed on first application and then every 5 years from the age of 45 until 65 then annually thereafter, DBS is required on application and then every 3 years thereafter unless you have signed up to the update service which will be offered to you on application. Do not book a medical until after you have passed the knowledge test.

To be a licensed driver, you must be deemed a fit and proper person. If you are abrupt or aggressive when talking to Council staff, this may prevent us from approving your application.

 

Fees Due

Please see our fees and charges page for details.

 

Driver Renewals

We will send our licensed drivers the appropriate renewal documentation approximately eight weeks before the expiry of your current Dual Driver's Licence. You are reminded that it is your responsibility, not the Council's, to renew your Licence. We require at least 14 working days for the application form to be submitted, Making an application without sufficient time for us to process, before the licence expires, means you may miss out on work as your application does not become our priority. Incomplete applications will not be accepted, inside the application form is a list of what is required to go with your application.

DBS

If you have been asked to apply for a DBS along with your renewal application you please follow the link https://www.personnelchecks.co.uk/taxis/arun/ Payment is required at the time of application. Verification documents will be verified at Littlehampton Civic Centre by the licensing team.

Medicals

If you have been asked for a medical.

Medicals are due on first application of licence then from ages 45, 50, 55, 60, 65 then annually. All drivers get a two month reminder along with their renewal  before the licences are due. We have contacted Dr’s surgeries within our district to ask why the medicals are taking so long to book, as some drivers had stated they struggled to make an appointment before their licence expires. The surgeries advised us that most drivers try to make an appointment at the last minute. It was explained to the surgeries that drivers have two month’s notice, each agreed this was sufficient time to book an appointment. It is in your own interest to contact your Dr’s surgery as soon as possible after you receive your renewal letter which states the medical is due. You are reminded that all medicals MUST be carried out by your own GP or practice. If we receive a medical from a surgery or GP where you are not registered the medical will be rejected and you will be required to have a new medical.

Renewals for Hackney Carriage Vehicles

We will send our licensed hackney carriage vehicles the appropriate renewal documentation approximately 4 weeks before the expiry of your current Hackney carriage licence. You are reminded that it is your responsibility, not the Council's, to renew your Licence. We require at least 14 working days for the application form to be submitted. Making an application without sufficient time for us to process, before the licence expires, means you may miss out on work as your application does not become our priority. Incomplete applications will not be accepted. Inside the application form is a list of what documentation is required to go with your form. 

 

Making a complaint against a licenced driver or vehicle

If the complaint is about the poor driving of a licenced driver you are advised to report it to Operation Crackdown http://www.operationcrackdown.org/

and Arun District Council. We would need as much information as you can give including plate number, reg number and if possible any other details of the vehicle.  

If the complaint is about the behaviour of a licenced driver this can be reported to Arun District Council giving as much information as possible regarding the incident. To include details of any witnesses to the incident, you may also wish to report this to the police on 101.

In all circumstances any compliant MUST be made in writing,  you can use the form found below if you wish to and sent  either via email taxis@arun.gov.uk or sent to Licensing Department,  Arun Civic Centre, Maltravers Road, Littlehampton West Sussex BN17 5LF

Please not we do not accept anonymous complaints

 

Discounted membership at Freedom Leisure

leisure centre

 

If any driver would like to join the gym at Littlehampton Wave or Arun Leisure Centre we have secured a discount for membership.

The joining fee for gym will be £29 instead of £39  and then £39 instead of £44 per month thereafter for gym membership.

Your Arun Driver Badge must be shown at the point of joining.

 

 

 

 

 

Forms

notification of an accident - 2018.doc [doc] 91KB

statement form for complaint against driver-vehicle.doc [doc] 85KB