23 December 2011
The number of licensed suburban taxi drivers has increased significantly in the
past ten years and there are now over 3,500 licensed suburban drivers
competing for a share of the taxi market in outer London. In recent years, taxi
driver associations and a number of individual suburban drivers have raised
concerns with TfL regarding the availability of work in suburban areas given
the increasing number of licensed drivers. Particular concerns have been
raised in relation to sectors in east and south west London.
TfL London Taxi and Private Hire provides prospective applicants with detailed
information about the number of drivers, existing Knowledge students and
various factors to take into account when considering whether or not to apply
for a licence but this has had limited impact on the number of applications.
In the past year, various taxi trade stakeholders have put forward a number of
different ideas and suggestions to TfL regarding suburban taxi driver licences
and areas. As a result of these representations, we intend to undertake a
detailed review of suburban licensing during 2012 which will result in the
launch of a trade consultation towards the end of the year.
Given the particularly high number of existing drivers and Knowledge students
in the sectors listed below, after 31 January 2012, TfL will not process any new
applications received after this date for suburban licences for the following
three sectors until this full and detailed review and subsequent consultation
has been completed:
Barking & Dagenham, Havering, Newham and Redbridge
Merton and Sutton
Hounslow, Kingston upon Thames and Richmond upon Thames
Anyone submitting an application for one of these sectors that is received after
31 January will be given the option of having their application put on hold
pending the outcome of the review; applying for another suburban sector; or
applying for an All London licence.
This decision does not impact in any way any existing licensed driver or those who have already applied for a suburban licence and are in the process of
learning the Knowledge of London for one of these sectors. All current
Knowledge students will be allowed to continue their studies and become
licensed upon successfully completing the examination process.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns with regards to this matter
then please contact us via TPHEnquiries@tfl.gov.uk
Director Taxi and Private Hire
For previous TPH Notices visit tfl.gov.uk/tph