Reduced Services

Accessing Council Services:  

  • You can access advice, or support with using our online services, by phoning 01268 882200 (8.45am to 5.15pm Mon to Thurs, and to 4.45pm on Fri)
  • The Kiln Road office will re-open for pre-booked appointments only (9.00am to 4.00pm), these can be arranged on a case by case basis by phoning 01268 882200.
  • You can find information and advice on COVID-19 and our 24/7 online services on our  Coronavirus information page .  

Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing

Castle Point Borough Council has a statutory responsibility to licence the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire trade.

Hackney Carriage Vehicles (Taxis) - Public safety is the main reason why the licensing of Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles, drivers and operators is regulated. The Council is required to ensure that all licence holders are ‘Fit and Proper’ persons to be licensed and that vehicles are accessible and safe.

A licensed taxi may be hired at one of the Boroughs taxi ranks, or it can be hailed in the street or be pre booked. Hackney Carriage vehicles display the Councils door sticker on the front doors and a licence plate to the front and rear of the vehicle. The plate is white and displays full details of the vehicle that is licensed. All hackney carriage vehicles must display a taxi roof sign and carry a taximeter. Wheelchair Accessible vehicles display an orange plate.

Private Hire Vehicles

Private Hire vehicles must be pre booked and are generally used by operators for contract hire, executive hire and airport work etc. These vehicles display the Councils door sticker on the front doors and a licence plate to the the front and rear of the vehicle. The plate is yellow and displays full details of the vehicle that is licensed.

Stretch Limousines

These vehicles carrying up to 8 passengers for hire and reward must be licensed with the Local Authority or Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA). Stretch limousines licensed with a local authority are not permitted under any circumstances to carry more than 8 passengers.

Initial Application (Drivers)

Before a person can drive a licensed vehicle, whether it be a Hackney Carriage or a Private Hire vehicle they must fulfil the following criteria:

  • Be over 21 years of age
  • Have held a full driving licence for not less than three years
  • Pass a medical examination of fitness to drive (Group 2 standard)
  • Complete and Enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service check
  • Sign a mandate in order that a check can be made through the Driving and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA)
  • Pass certificate for a driving assessment for taxis and private hire vehicles

All applicants will be required to submit:-

  • An application form 
  • A Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) form together with three forms of identification
  • A medical form (to be completed by your own GP or any doctor licensed with The General Medical Council) and sent direct to the Licensing Manager, Castle Point Borough Council.
  • Signed mandate for a check through the DVLA
  • The appropriate fee (details can be obtained from the Licensing Unit on 01268 882480)
  • Attend a Disability Discrimination Awareness and Safeguarding course and produce the original certificate as proof of attendance.
  • A Pass certificate for a driving assessment for taxis and private hire vehicles

Applicants for a Hackney Carriage Licence will be required to sit a knowledge test, based on the Castle Point area. A test appointment can only be made after the appropriate documents have been received by this office.

Payments

For more assistance call the Licensing Unit on 01268 882480

Applying for a Licence - How to do this

To apply for a licence to become a driver and drive a Hackney Carriage or Private Hire vehicle or for any other queries, please contact the Licensing Unit on 01268 882480 

By appointment:- The Licensing Unit, Castle Point Borough Council, Kiln Road Benfleet, Essex SS7 1TF

Lost Property

It is a condition of licence that all drivers finding lost property in their vehicles, hand the item(s) into a local police station or to the Licensing Office as soon as possible and in any event within 72 hours. If you have left your property in a licensed vehicle please report it to the above office. Your details will be recorded and you will be contacted if your property is returned to the Licensing Office. Please be aware that the driver is permitted to charge a small fee for the return of your property.

Exemptions

Exemptions from licensing a vehicle for the carriage of passengers for hire and reward are weddings and funeral cars.

Minibuses that are capable of carrying more than 8 passengers must be licensed as a PSV through the Traffic Commissioner at Cambridge.

Complaints and Compliments

If you wish to make a compliant about a licensed driver or the service you have received please do so, in writing, to the head of Licensing and Community Safety and include the drivers licence plate number or badge number, together with a date and time of the incident.

If your complaint refers to driving, please inform the Head of Licensing and the Traffic Police if you feel the drivers’ actions were dangerous.

Compliments can be made in writing or by telephone to the Head of Licensing at Castle Point Borough Council.

Telephone No. 01268 882480 or  licensing@castlepoint.gov.uk

Castle Point Borough Council, Kiln Road, Benfleet, Essex SS7  1TF

Fees and Charges