Taxi licences

What is a taxi, how to apply and pay for a taxi licence, how to renew and change your taxi licence, other permissions you may need, how to get your taxi tested, who regulates taxi vehicles and what happens if you don't apply for a licence. 

What is a taxi?

A taxi is also known as a hackney carriage vehicle.

A licensed hackney carriage vehicle can pick passengers up from taxi ranks in their district, be flagged-down in a street in their district, or undertake pre-booked jobs anywhere in the country.

If you only want to take pre-booked jobs you will need to apply for a private hire vehicle licence. Hackney carriages must be predominately used on hackney carriage ranks or hailed in the streets of their licensed district.

Vehicles must be licensed if they are hired with a driver for any reward (ie. money/business benefit) unless they are being used solely in connection with a wedding or funeral.

How do I apply for a taxi licence?

If you wish to licence a new hackney carriage vehicle (taxi) then you must take the following steps to ensure all points are covered. This is summarised in the attached guidance document below.

You can also seek written advice in writing from the Taxi Hub at taxi.hub@eastriding.gov.uk.

Hackney Carriage Vehicle Guidance Document (pdf 457kb)

Step 1 - Purchase

When seeking to purchase a vehicle you must ensure that you check carefully that any proposed vehicle meets all relevant parts of the [specification A or B] and are able to comply with the council's intended use policy for hackney carriage vehicles. We recommend that you take a copy with you to the garage/vehicle seller.

The vehicle MUST BE white in its base colour. No other colour will be accepted. The spraying of a vehicle is not acceptable to the Authority.

All applications for a hackney carriage vehicle licence will be expected to demonstrate the intention to primarily ply for hire with the East Riding district and fulfill the purpose of a hackney carriage on the rank or plying for trade, each case will be assessed on its own merits. If the authority is not satisfied the vehicle meets the intended use policy the application may be refused or advice will be given in relation to a private hire licensed vehicle.

Hackney Carriage Vehicle Specification/Intended Use 

Step 2 – Preparation

When you have purchased a vehicle and are satisfied that it meets the vehicle specification, if you choose specification B you will have to prepare the vehicle by installing a rotating swivel seat, taximeter, and top light.

The rotating swivel seat must be fitted by a council-approved manufacturer/installer and is a new seat/base or is less than three years 364 days old at the time of re-installation with prior written permission to transfer the seat/base into the replacement vehicle.

It is possible that during the installation of a rotating swivel seat that the installer it may be necessary to disarm some airbags and pre-tensioners in accordance with the seat manufacturer’s instructions. It is important that you discuss any airbag and pre-tensioner disarming with both the installer and your insurance company prior to installation to ensure you are satisfied with what is proposed. The installer will ask you to sign a declaration to confirm that you have agreed to disarm the airbags and pre-tensioners, if necessary. If so, evidence of this will be required at step 3.

Step 3 – Application

An application form and application fee of £210 MUST be submitted electronically using the button below:

Apply online for a hackney carriage vehicle licence

Step 4 – Inspection

Following your application been submitted an officer will contact you to arrange an appointment to inspect your proposed vehicle and receive all supporting documents prior to authorisation for your vehicle test (certificate of compliance)

The Taxi Hub will arrange an inspection appointment for you within 48 hours of your application being made.

The Taxi Hub MUST inspect your new vehicle before the vehicles compliance test.

You must bring along the following documents to the inspection:

  • V5 registered keeper document
  • Bill of sale for the purchase of the vehicle
  • Fully comprehensive insurance certificate for Public Hire
  • Taximeter calibration certificate
  • Type Approval/Conversion Documentation (Specification A)
  • Swivel seat receipt and fitting certificate (Specification B)
  • Swivel seat warranty document (Specification B)
  • Swivel seat airbag declaration (Specification B).

Step 5 – Certificate of Compliance

If the vehicle is (not under 6 months old) than the vehicle MUST be compliance tested at one of the three testing centres, the details and contact numbers are shown below. You will require an e-mail to be sent to the test centre in advance from the Taxi Hub to have the vehicle tested. The fee of £56 is set by the test centre and must be paid directly to them.

Beverley Depot, Annie Reed Road, Beverley

Between 6.30am and 14.30pm, to book an appointment call (01482) 395781 or (01482) 395516.

Carnaby Depot, Carnaby Industrial Estate, Bridlington

Between 6.30am and 12.00 noon, to book an appointment call (01262) 401973.

Goole Depot, Seavy Road, Goole

Between 6.30am and 1200 noon, to book an appointment call (01405) 766938.

Step 6 – Grant of the Licence

When the Taxi Hub has received your certificate of compliance and checked all other supporting documents we will contact you to arrange collection of the licence, plate and stickers.

The Taxi Hub will arrange a plate appointment for you within 7 days of a full application being made.

Step 7 – Livery Installation

Present the vehicle for the installation of the council’s livery at the pre-arranged date and time.

The vehicle does not need to wrapping before the licence is granted but will be a condition of licence. This is arranged by the Taxi Hub.

Tacit consent

A tacit consent does not apply to a hackney carriage vehicle application, meaning that your application will not be automatically granted after a specified period of time. Each application must be considered on its own merits to ensure the vehicle meets all safety requirements.

Equality Act 2010

Section 165 of the Equality Act 2010 has been adopted in the East Riding of Yorkshire, meaning all wheelchair accessible licensed vehicles, deemed capable of carrying a reference sized wheelchair (120 x 70 cm, with a maximum combined weight of 300kg)  will be published in accordance with section 167 of the Equality Act 2010. 

All drivers of these vehicles are therefore required to carry out the full duties under the Equality Act 2010 as follows:

  • carry passengers whilst in the wheelchair 
  • make no additional charge for doing so
  • if a person chooses to sit in a chair, carry the wheelchair 
  • take such steps as reasonably necessary to ensure the passenger is carried safety and reasonable comfort
  • to give passengers such assistance as reasonably required.

 Section 166 of the Act makes provision for licensing authorities to issue exemptions to drivers where they are satisfied it is appropriate to do so:

  • on medical grounds; or
  • on the ground that the person’s physical conditions make it impossible or unreasonably difficult for the person to comply with those duties.

A driver will only be exempt therefore if an exemption certificate has been issued and notice of exemption issued by the Council is exhibited on the vehicle in the prescribed manner.

You can view the list of accessible vehicles under section 167 of the Equality Act 2010.

What other permissions may I need?

A licensed taxi can only be driven by a badged private hire/hackney carriage driver, you will need to apply to the licensing team to obtain a private hire/hackney carriage drivers licence.

What if my vehicle is damaged or involved in an accident?

If your vehicle is damaged or involved in an accident, you must notify us within 48 hours of the occurrence.

You need to complete the form (button below) and submit it to us.

Report a vehicle accident online

How do I renew my taxi licence?

Your vehicle licence will end after 12 months, unless before the end date you apply to renew your vehicle licence.

Intended Use Policy

All applications for a hackney carriage vehicle licence will be expected to demonstrate the intention to ply for hire with the East Riding district, each case will be assessed on its own merits. If the authority is not satisfied the application may be refused. 

The current fee for renewing your hackney carriage licence is £175.

It is your responsibility to ensure you renew your licence before the current licence ends.

Apply to renew a hackney carriage vehicle licence

Please note: be aware that if your vehicle is 7-years-of-age or over and you fail to renew your licence in time, we cannot licence the vehicle again.

Vehicles that are over 11-years-of-age cannot be re-licensed unless they are a purpose-built hackney carriage vehicle which will not be re-licensed if they are more than 12-years-of-age.

A tacit consent does not apply to this application, meaning that your licence will not be automatically granted after a specified period of time. Each application must be considered on its own merit. 

I no longer want my hackney carriage vehicle licence what should I do?

If you no longer want your hackney carriage vehicle licence, you must email confirmation of your surrender request to:

Email: taxi.hub@eastriding.gov.uk.

and return your vehicle plate, windscreen plate and paper licence to:

The Taxi Hub 
County Hall
Cross Street
East riding of Yorkshire
HU17 9BA

or via any customer service centre.

Please use our customer service centre finder to locate a centre. 

How do I transfer my vehicle licence?

An application to transfer a hackney carriage vehicle or a private hire vehicle licence must be submitted to the licensing team no more than 14 days after the sale of the vehicle has been made.

Applications that are received after 14 days will not be processed, the vehicle licence will lapse and the plate will have to be returned to the licensing team.

Vehicles that no longer meet the required standard cannot then be re-licensed.

To transfer a vehicle licence you must complete the form below and submit it to the licensing team:

The current fee to transfer a vehicle licence is £90.

Apply to transfer a vehicle licence and plate

Once a transfer application has been processed you will be issued with a licence for the remaining time on the existing licence. A renewal application must be submitted prior to the end of the licence period or it will lapse.

Intended Use Policy

All applications for a hackney carriage vehicle licence transfers will be expected to demonstrate the intention to ply for hire with the East Riding district, each case will be assessed on its own merits. If the authority is not satisfied the application may be refused. 

Tacit consent

A tacit consent does not apply to this application, meaning that your application will not automatically be granted after a specified period of time. Each application must be considered on its own merit, as each application has to be checked to ensure all legal requirements have been met.

How do I change my taxi licence?

Change of address/change of name

Apply online to change your details. 

If your change of name is due to marriage or divorce, we will require a certified copy of your marriage certificate or divorce papers. Your documents can be certified at any of the customer service centre across the East Riding. Please use our customer service centre finder to locate your nearest centre.

Change of vehicle

If you want to change your vehicle, you will need to ensure any new vehicle meets the hackney carriage vehicle specifications.

This will be treated as a new application and a new plate number and licence will be issued.

Additional equipment/Advertising

If you wish to place advertising on your Hackney Carriage vehicle, written permission must be obtained from the Licensing Team

You will need to put your request in writing, explaining which permission you seek to: 

Email taxi.hub@eastriding.gov.uk


If you wish to use a trailer with your licensed vehicle, you are required to undertake a risk assessment for its use.

How do I get my taxi tested?

Existing licence holders can have their vehicle tested up to 30 days in advance of their current compliance certificate expiring. The new compliance certificate will then be dated in line with their previous compliance certificate.

You will not be able to renew your licence unless you have a valid compliance certificate at the time of renewal.

There are three council depots where you can have your vehicle tested. Tests are by appointment, for the fees and to book a test you will need to contact the testing station.

Who regulates taxi licensing?

Licensed taxi proprietors

If you hold a licence for a hackney carriage vehicle, you must adhere to our by-laws at all times, and the licence conditions attached to your vehicle licence.

Reporting concerns

If you want to report an unlicensed taxi, or you have a complaint about a taxi licensed by East Riding of Yorkshire Council, you can contact the licensing team by:

Email: taxi.hub@eastriding.gov.uk

You will be asked to give your name and contact details to the licensing team. Your details will not be disclosed unless the investigation results in a prosecution. All complaints will be investigated in line with the licensing policy.

How do I know if a taxi is licensed?

All new or replacement hackney carriage vehicles will now have white and Pantone green livery markings on the vehicles making the vehicle easily recognisable for the general public as a licensed ERY hackney carriage. Existing licensed hackney carriages will still remain in operation until January 2021. 

Hackney carriage vehicles licensed by East Riding of Yorkshire Council must have white and black oval stickers on their doors with their trading name and telephone number, a top light with the word taxi, and a plate fixed to the rear of the vehicle with their individual plate number, as well as a smaller plate in the front window. 

A hackney carriage vehicle can be hailed down on the street, picked up from a rank, or take pre-booked fares.

Hackney carriage/private hire drivers must wear a badge issued by the East Riding of Yorkshire Council. The badge has a photograph of the driver along with their licence number and the expiry date of their driver’s badge.

Licensed vehicles

The public register below shows all vehicles currently licensed in the East Riding of Yorkshire district:

Public Register - Private hire and hackney carriage licensed vehicles (pdf 449kb)

This register was last updated on 19 February 2021.

For further information or enquiries please email: taxi.hub@eastriding.gov.uk

Taxi fares

A hackney carriage vehicle must be fitted with a meter that must be switched on at the start of a journey. The driver can not charge the passengers more than the fare on the meter for any journey that starts and ends in the East Riding district.

A hackney carriage vehicle licensed by the East Riding of Yorkshire Council must have the meter calibrated to charge the fares set out in the hackney carriage fare tariff they must never charge more than the final fare on the meter.

Hackney carriage fare tariff (pdf 38kb)

If you book a private hire vehicle you must agree on the fare before the journey. Private hire operators set their own fares their fares are not set by East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

Unlicensed activities

If any person is found to be driving, operating or using a vehicle for the purposes of hire and reward or public hire without the correct authorisation in place East Riding of Yorkshire Council may prosecute.

Each case will be treated on its own merits, and determined individually in line with East Riding of Yorkshire Council's licensing enforcement protocols.

If a vehicle or driver is used without a licence, it may mean their insurance policy is invalidated and the individual driving the vehicle may not have been police checked and vetted for their suitability.

Breach of licence conditions

If you are a vehicle owner and you are found not to be complying with your licence conditions, the licensing team can take the following actions in line with East Riding of Yorkshire Council's licensing enforcement protocols:

  • Written warning
  • Referral to the licensing committee (for further information on the licensing committee please see further down the page)
  • Prosecution.

What happens if I do not apply for a taxi licence?

If you use a vehicle for carrying passenger for hire and reward without a valid licence, you will be committing an offence and the licensing team may prosecute you.

Each case would be dealt with on its own merits and in accordance with our enforcement protocols.

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