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Applying for grant/renewal/transfer of a Private Hire or Hackney Carriage vehicle licence

COVID-19 - Change in procedures: All application forms and supporting documents must be submitted via email to licensing.team@threerivers.gov.uk . To arrange payment of the application fee please call customer services on 01923 776611


Application process

To apply for either a Hackney Carriage or private hire vehicle licence please download and print the forms below. 

There are online forms available here which can be completed onscreen and emailed to us.

When submitting the application you will be required to submit all of the following original documents:

  • Completed application form - download and print above form/collect a hardcopy from reception
  • Correct fee, payable by credit or debit card
  • MOT certificate and compliance pass certificate issued by one of our designated garages
  • Proof of ownership of vehicle:
    • Vehicle registration document V5C or new keepers slip (V5C/2) or
    • Bill of sale plus V5C/2 or
    • Hire purchase agreement (if the vehicle is on hire purchase)
  • Valid insurance certificate covering the driver for hire and reward and third party risks to passengers
  • Any other documents as stated on the application form
  • Certificate showing meter (if fitted) has been calibrated, sealed and if Hackney Carriage tariffed 

Once you have submitted all of the above as required to licensing.team@threerivers.gov.uk you will be required to call our customer services department to arrange payment of the application fee.

Please see our current list of fees. (pdf)


Vehicle requirements and conditions

PLEASE NOTE: A vehicle must meet our criteria in order to be licensed. Please ensure that you have read our Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Policy BEFORE purchasing a vehicle or submitting an application. 

Insurance categories:
We do not licence any category write-off vehicles. So be aware of this before buying any vehicle. It may be worth considering having a full HPI test done on the vehicle. HPI tests show if a vehicle is written off, stolen, how many owners, VIN number and if there is any outstanding finance on the vehicle.

If your current licensed vehicle has an accident and the insurance company write it off you cannot continue to use that vehicle for Private Hire or Hackney Carriage work. Anyone trying to bring a write-off back into the trade will have the plates cancelled immediately.

Listed below are the categories insurance companies use to determine write-offs:

  • CATEGORY A: Scrap - This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person, declared unsuitable or beyond repair and has been identified to be crushed in its entirety
  • CATEGORY B: Break - This vehicle has been inspected by an appropriately qualified person and declared unsuitable or beyond repair. Usable parts can be recycled
  • CATEGORY S: Repairable structural - Repairable vehicle which has sustained damage to any part of the structural frame or chassis and the insurer/ self-insured owner has decided not to repair the vehicle
  • CATEGORY N: Repairable non-structural - Repairable vehicle which has not sustained damage to the structural frame or chassis and the insurer/self-insured owner has decided not to repair the vehicle. While the damage has been noted as non-structural, there may still be some safety critical items that require replacement e.g. steering and suspension parts
Age of vehicles
At the time a vehicle is first licensed (including changes of vehicles if not to a currently licensed vehicle), the vehicle must normally be less than 7 years of age. The vehicle’s age will be determined by the vehicle registration document. The age limit may be exceeded if the vehicle complies with all applicable standards. Once a vehicle reaches 10 years of age, the licence will only be renewed if the vehicle passes 3 compliance tests each year, at approximately 4-monthly intervals.

Please read through the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Policy (pdf) before purchasing a vehicle.


MOT and compliance check

All vehicles aged over 1 year are required to undergo an annual MOT check as per the DVSA guidance. The vehicle will also need to be compliance checked annually at one of our authorised garages. The amount of compliance checks the vehicle is due is dependent on the age of the vehicle. Once a vehicle reaches 10 years of age, the licence will only be renewed if the vehicle passes 3 compliance tests each year, at approximately 4-monthly intervals.

The MOT pass certificate and/or compliance pass certificate must be submitted to the Licensing department along with the application and all other relevant documents. 

Vehicles that fail the MOT and or compliance test must be removed from service immediately and only returned to the fleet once a pass certificate has been provided to the licensing team. Failure to remove a vehicle from service will be a breach of the licensing conditions and further action maybe taken against your licence.

Licensing officers carry out random checks on vehicles and drivers throughout the year to ensure they continue to comply with these requirements. 


Maintaining the licence

Once the application has been granted, a licence will be issued allowing the vehicle to be used for up to 12 months as a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle, as applicable. We will also issue a set of licence plates which must be displayed on the vehicle at all times, unless an exemption has been granted. Failure to display the plates correctly is an offence. 

While the licence is in force, the licence-holder must inform us in writing of:

  • any change to their address,
  • any collisions or incidents involving the vehicle, or
  • any change to the details of the vehicle (a fee is payable for changes relating to personal number plates, or the vehicle's colour, structure or capacity).

Licence-holders must notify us if they sell the licensed vehicle (the new owner will also be required to apply for a new licence in their own name). It is not possible to sell or retain the 'plate' (licence) on its own - it must be transferred to the new owner with the vehicle to which it relates.

Renewal applications must be received at least four weeks prior to the expiry of the licence. If a renewal application is not made before the expiry date, the licence will lapse and a new application will be required. This may result in the vehicle being unlicensed for a period of time but may also mean that if the vehicle does not meet the standard as a new vehicle on the fleet it may be refused.

Vehicles may be periodically stopped and/or inspected by licensing officers or the police, to ensure that they are being maintained correctly and are complying with both road laws and our licensing conditions.


Collision and defect reporting

If your licensed vehicle is involved in any collision, or incident which effects the safety, performance or appearance of the vehicle you must report it to us within 72 hours using the link below.   
If your vehicle has a mechanical fault that means you will need to rent a temporary vehicle, you must also report this to us through below link
 

Private Hire Vehicle Plate exemption 

In order to be considered for plate exemption, the work you carry out must be exclusively or primarily chauffeured (executive) private hire work. This means that you provide the chauffeur and vehicle to a business or person, and the display of a licence plate may affect the dignity or security of the persons you are carrying.

To apply for plate exemption, you must submit the following:

Please note that if your request is granted, you are required to carry the vehicle plate and letter of dispensation in the vehicle at all times. The internal plate must be displayed in the windscreen on the passenger side at all times. The exemption expires on the same date the plate expires, and must be applied for each time. 

YOUR DRIVERS' BADGE MUST BE WORN AT ALL TIMES EVEN WHEN EXEMPTION/DISPENSATION HAS BEEN GRANTED FOR THE VEHICLE.  


Contact us

For more information about taxi and private hire vehicle licences, please use the the online form