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Author Clive Pinder

15 December 2017

Mayor Khan Expects Cabbies To Provide The Same Service , As He CutsFunding For Taxicard.

Mayor Sadiq Khan's plan to slash the level of funding he provides for Taxicard services, has come under criticism from London's Local Councils.
The scheme subsidises taxi journeys for the disabled, allowing them to make journeys many would otherwise struggle to afford.
Taxi card holders pay a small amount towards the fare, and the rest is paid by the scheme. 
But the Mayor who funds the scheme through TfL, has announced plans to reduce funding by 13% in the coming financial year, followed by further cuts next year.
"This means fewer journeys or a lower level of subsidy for disabled people using the Taxicard account" said London Councils, a cross-party body, representing all local authorities in the capital. 
Councillor Julian Bell warns that TfL and the Mayor’s decision to draw up the cuts without first carrying out an equalities impact assessment could leave them open to a legal challenge.
Bell, serves as Chair of London Councils Transport and Environment Committee and is also the Labour leader of Ealing Council. 
The Councillors also said that the cuts go against Mr Khan’s election pledge to support the Taxicard scheme. He went on to say; “The scale of cuts proposed would appear to undermine Mayor's statement of support.”
City Hall claimed that despite the proposed cuts, both they and TfL are “fully committed to the Taxicard Scheme, and can guarantee that there will no reduction at all in the service being provided anywhere in London. 

from Taxi Leaks

14 December 2017

It's Official, Uber Are Operating Illegally And TfL Are Complicit.... By Jim Thomas

The answer has been there all the time and both TfL and our orgs have completely missed it. 

Listening to the licensing hearing from York yesterday, the subject was touched on more than once. But even so, no one seems to be picking up on this. 

It’s not as if this has been kept secret (like the hacking of Uber customer details, Or GreyBall, or the UberRape stats, of the Uber fake medicals, or the 13,000 Uber drivers with fake DBS certificates), this has been mentioned on oath in two court cases, one in Canada, the other in London at the workers rights tribunal.

There was even an all org meeting called to discuss this issue at Taxi house (which I attended) and it turned out both the RMT and Unite hadn’t bothered to research the subject. 
There was no follow up to this meeting.

All the time, the answer has been there and it doesn’t need an APPG parliamentary commission, or a Judicial review, or a million pound war chest.

So what is this magic bullet ?

Don’t just take my word for it, take the trouble to listen to the webcast in the York licensing post. 
A number of the witnesses giving evidence said virtually the same thing. 

Here is Lee Ward, Chairman of ALPHA, giving his objection at the Licensing hearing, it's just 3 minutes long but gives all the insight needed.


At a number of licence applications, Uber were asked a very simple question. 

"Could you tell us who the contract for the journey is between...?"
Who accepts the booking, is it Uber or the driver?

We have been told twice under oath in court, that the driver accepts the booking and this is illegal !!!

At all applications where this question has been asked, Uber gave no reply and the application was subsequently withdrawn.

Why are our orgs not asking this question?
Why haven't TfL asked Uber this question?

PH operators Abstract of Law PHV act 1998.

Sometimes, the answer to the most complicated problems are quite simple.

from Taxi Leaks

MP Jackie Doyle-Price, Wants Law Change To Prevent Uber Operating InThurrock On TfL Licence.

Safety concerns over Uber drivers operating in Thurrock
Concerns have been raised over Uber drivers operating in Thurrock, with the MP for the borough calling for a change in the law.
Jackie Doyle-Price, who is the MP for Thurrock, said she is concerned for public safety and wants the law to change to prevent Uber drivers operating in Thurrock on a TfL licence.
She said: “To qualify for a license you have to be judged as being a fit and proper person. I am aware that there are at least three individuals who had their application for a taxi licence declined by Thurrock Council who subsequently were awarded licences by TfL and offer Uber services.
“It is compromising the licensing regime operated very effectively by Thurrock council and that gives me concerns about public safety.
“The law isn’t fit for purpose and needs reform.
"It was passed in 1831, when Hackney carriages were pulled by horses. It predates the motor car, let alone the smartphone.
“In the meantime I choose not to use Uber. I have never used one and don’t intend to start, no matter how much cheaper they are.”
This comes after it was reported that Uber’s TfL licence review would not be until Spring of next year, meaning they can operate on that licence for at least another three months.
Although Uber drivers are not legally allowed to pickup outside of London on a TfL licence, they are allowed to drop passengers off.
A taxi driver, who works for Thameside Taxis but only wished to disclose his first name – Paul – also raised concerns for people’s safety in the borough.
He said: “I think this is a big issue and my main concern is the safety of the passengers in Thurrock.
“As taxi drivers, we have to go on a Child Sexual Exploitation course and also have to comply with Thurrock Council’s regulations. Uber operate outside the law”
Uber have been contacted twice for comment but have not responded.

from Taxi Leaks

13 December 2017

London Taxi Driver Hailed Local Hero.

A black cab driver has been hailed as a 'hero' after helping a nurse get to work during the snow storm over the weekend.

The nurse, who works at Queen's Hospital, found it difficult getting a taxi due to the vast amounts of snow coming down in the area on Saturday night.

A number of companies were asking for double the normal fair due to the inclement weather.

But the nurse - who doesn't want to be named - hailed a cab on the street and on arrival at Queen's he refused to take her money.

The story was shared by a friend of the nurse on Facebook who called him a "hero".

Another person wrote "Well done to the black cab driver you sir are a gentleman" with one saying "Glad there's some good out there"

from Taxi Leaks

Balochistan Activists Accuse London Mayor Of Censorship

LONDON mayor Sadiq Khan has been criticised over his office banning an ad campaign relating to a conflict-ridden region in Pakistan.

The #FreeBalochistan adverts were displayed on London taxis and buses to highlight alleged “war crimes and human rights abuses”, but were later removed by Transport for London (TfL) for allegedly breaching advertising guidelines.

Peter Tatchell, a human rights activist who helped organise the campaign, told Eastern Eye that the ban was an attack on freedom of expression. He accused TfL of allowing a foreign government to “dictate” the adverts it carries.

“Transport for London was wrong to bow to ‘demands’ by the Pakistan government to block these human rights adverts. Pakistan is seeking to ‘impose in Britain the same censorship’ about Balochistan that it imposes inside Pakistan,” Tatchell said.

“The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled that the adverts are legitimate and acceptable, so why is Transport for London still censoring them? I appeal to the mayor to intervene to get the adverts reinstated,” he added.

Balochistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, is Pakistan’s most restive province. It is afflicted by Islamist militancy and sectarian violence as well as the separatist insurgency.

The region, which makes up 44 per cent of Pakistan’s land mass, has often made the headlines with reports of mass kidnappings, torture and executions.

The ASA said it had considered the complaints, including from the Pakistan High Commission, regarding the “Free Balochistan” ads but did not believe there were grounds to launch a formal investigation, despite it being a “politically sensitive issue”.

“After carefully assessing the complaints, ASA council did not consider that the ‘Free Balochistan’ ad made a specific claim that threatened the territorial integrity or sovereignty of Pakistan,” the agency said.

It added that advertisers had a right to express their views as long as the ad was in line with the Advertising Code.

“The ASA’s role is to assess what appears in an ad itself, not to make broader judgements
about the intent or political cause of an ad,” it said.

“As such, without making a judgment on the legitimacy of the cause being advertised, we considered the ad was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence and did not take further action.”

A spokesperson for TfL said: “The advert did not comply with our advertising guidelines. We instructed London Taxi Advertising to remove them.”

TfL’s advertising policy says “adverts defending the right to life, liberty and security will not normally be banned, even if they are controversial and sensitive”.

Earlier this year, the company allowed the display of an overt political ad campaign relating to the regional dispute in Qatar over alleged human rights abuses.

When asked about this specific instance, TfL said it had “nothing further to add”.

According to media reports in Pakistan, the British high commissioner in Islamabad, Thomas Drew, was summoned by Pakistani authorities on two separate occasions last month over the adverts, which Pakistan said “directly attack its territorial integrity and sovereignty” and should not be allowed on “the soil of a friendly country”.

Bhawal Mengal, a human rights activist from the World Baloch Organisation and coordinator of the ad campaign, claimed that TfL’s actions were “unfair” to the Baloch
people and British values.

He said: “It was surprising that the UK high commissioner would succumb to the pressure so quickly and release a statement that is actually against the UN charter which Britain is a signatory of.

“Sadiq Khan was quick to act on Pakistan’s orders in getting TfL to remove the ads, without realising that if the ads were in fact a major violation of its guidelines, how did they make it on to the cabs and buses to begin with?”

Bhawal claimed such campaigns are important to make people aware of the human rights breaches in the region.

“I would simply ask them to reconsider the adverts, not to give in to Pakistan’s bullying tactics and rather be true to their values and to the values that the UK believes in and stands for,” Mengal added.

from Taxi Leaks

Jamie Owens Explains 'Why I Decided To Leave London Taxi Radio.

Hosted this week by @SuperCabby

Special Guest messages this week:
Grant Davis

Issues discussed this week:

* Explanation of why I decided to leave LTR
* Uber head to court this week for the appeals process Uber appeal to be heard on 19th April 2018
* Sean Stockings still does not have his license back
* Sean Stockings appeal
* TFL Scrap the need for 13,000 PH drivers with fake DBS checks to reapply for their license
* Fraser Nash not started production of the Metrocab due to impending Supreme Court decision issued by LTC/LEVC
* Call for handsfree mobile phones to be banned
* Get launch on Demand Porsche cars
* New Website for Cab Chat Show
* Uber licensing decision in York
* Uber licensing decision in Leicester

Tel: 07784 161656

from Taxi Leaks

More Traffic Khanage On Holloway Road, Plus Another TfL Waste Of Time Consultation.

From 01:00 on Monday 18 December until 04:00 on Monday 8 January, the A1 Holloway Road will be closed in both directions between Digswell Street and Highbury Corner roundabout. This is while we demolish and build a stronger Highbury Corner Bridge. 
Travel advice
Signed diversions will be in place for all traffic. Roads in and around the area are expected to be busier than usual, especially during peak hours. Buses will be delayed, diverted or stop short of their normal destination. Access to the station, local shops and businesses will be possible at all times. 

Please plan ahead and allow more time for journeys. For full details, please visit

I apologise for the inconvenience caused by these essential works.

Yours sincerely,

Nick Fairholme

Oh No... Not Another Useless Consultation!
TfL are consulting on the next stage of the Mayor, Sadiq Khan’s plan to help tackle London’s toxic air pollution, which contributes to thousands of early deaths in our city each year. 

To have your say visit 

From 8 April 2019, the Mayor is introducing the Ultra Low Emission Zone in central London, replacing the T-Charge with an even tighter emission standards for diesel vehicles. There will also be new Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle (PHV) licencing requirements from 2018.  

Further information on what this means for private hire vehicles can be found here
To help further reduce toxic emissions in London, the Mayor is also now proposing to:
  • Extend these tighter emissions standards to the whole of London for lorries, buses and other heavy goods vehicles only in 2020 
  • Expand the ULEZ for all vehicles including cars, vans, motorbikes and minibuses up to the North and South circular roads in 2021 
This consultation ends on 21 February 2018.

Yours sincerely, 

Alex Williams,
Director of City Planning, TfL

If TfL were really serious about tackling London's so called Toxic air, then the Mayor should step in to stop the massive amount of congestion being caused by the segregated cycle super highways. 

We now have 24hr congestion on many London roads that wasn't there before the lanes were put in. 

Also the over supply of London buses needs to be dealt with. At the last bus strike, London's pollution level dropped by 50% but a blind eye as always was turned towards these statistics. 

from Taxi Leaks

It's All Smoke And Mirrors As Uber's Temporary Sheffield Ban Is Lifted.

A suspension of Uber’s licence to operate in Sheffield has been lifted, the city council confirmed.
The minicab firm’s licence to operate in the northern city was suspended on November 29 after it failed to respond to requests about the management of the instant hail app, Sheffield City Council said.

However, the suspension was today lifted following “productive” discussions between the San Fransisco-based company and the council.
A spokesman for Sheffield City Council said: “Uber provided satisfactory replies to the questions asked by Sheffield City Council about the management of Uber.”

The new application, made by Uber in October, to operate private hire cars in Sheffield is being considered and a decision will be made in early 2018. There is still a chance the licence will not be renewed.

The move comes today, after York refused to grant Uber a licence to operate in the city.
Uber's licence was due to expire in York on Christmas Eve this year, having twice previously been granted clearance to operate - most recently on December 21 2016.

At yesterday's meeting in York, Uber said if it's licence wasn't renewed, it would use cars from outside the City of York to carry on its operation. 
Transport for London (TfL) refused to renew the ride-hailing firm's licence on the grounds of "public safety and security implications" in September. 
A spokesman for Uber in York said: "This is a disappointing vote for the riders and drivers who use our app in the city. 

Last year the sexual assaults including rapes in Uber vehicles, increased by 50%, road traffic accidents in London have increased dramatically. It was reported in the media that 13,000 Uber drivers had faked their criminal record DBS checks. 
Not forgetting that Uber tried to sweep under the carpet the fact that 57 million customer accounts had been compromised when their system was hacked. 

from Taxi Leaks

York Follow London, Reading, Cardiff, North Tyneside And Refuse To Re License Uber.

York Council chiefs refuse to renew Uber's licence in York.

Council chiefs have refused to renew the Minicab-hailing company Uber's licence to operate in York.

Members of York Council's Gambling, Licensing and Regulatory Committee tonight debated for more than two hours over Uber Britannia Limited's application.

The company's current 12-month licence is due to expire on Christmas Eve.

Councillors concluded that the Minicab firm are not a fit and proper person - a required condition to refuse an application of its kind.

A spokesperson for York Council said: “The application by Uber Britannia Ltd to renew its private hire operator’s licence in York has been considered by City of York Council’s Gambling, Licensing and Regulatory Committee tonight.

“Applying the legislation, the committee has decided to refuse the application having concerns about a data breach currently under investigation and the number of complaints received."

Speaking after the meeting Neil McGonigle, general manager for Uber in York, said the company would now review the details of the decision.

It comes after Transport for London refused to renew Uber’s licence on the grounds of “public safety and security implications” in September.

The firm's appeal against that decision in London will be heard by Westminster Magistrates’ Court in Spring next year. Uber Britannia Limited can lodge an appeal with the Magistrates' Court over the latest decision by York Council.

Cllr Sonja Crisp tabled a motion to refuse the application on the basis of the data breach that affected the 57 million customers and drivers in 2016.

The second reason for refusal related to complaints made against the firm in York.

The decision is the latest blow to hit the taxi-hailing company, after Uber had its licence suspended in Sheffield this week.

The move came after the firm failed to respond to requests for information about its management.

Over half of all complaints to York Council regarding Taxi and Private Hire were against Uber Drivers!
Since December 2016, 296 complaints were made relating to hackney carriage and private hire vehicles or drivers in York up to November 22.

York Council said 155 of these complaints related to Uber vehicles or drivers.

But only four related to an Uber vehicle or driver licensed by the council - and 151 were made against those licensed by other local authorities, leading to councillors raising questions about the number of Uber drivers coming from outside York to work in the city.

Cllr Dave Taylor, a member of the committee, said during the meeting: "This city needs to have control of its taxi and Private Hire services and it needs to have a level playing field and I don't know if that means then national legislation needs to be tidied up.

"But I don't think that we can license a company which directs drivers to go around the houses, pumping up fair for customers, that tries to claim it has no liability for any claims, demands or losses, which claims to have a local office but never seems to staff it and the number of complaints against them is so high.

"I think those are the grounds on which we can refuse this licence."

Neil McGonigle, Uber Head of Cities, North of England, spoke in support of Uber at the meeting.

He revealed that some 28,000 have used the company's app in York in the last three months.

The meeting was told licenses for Uber to operate had been refused in Reading, North Tyneside and Cardiff, as well as London.

Saf Din, chairman of York Hackney Carriage Association said he does not object to competition, but that Uber was not a "fair player" in the public transport game.

Ahead of the decision, Mr Din told the meeting: "I urge you to be the most active members by refusing the application and offer no licence until you are fully satisfied."

He also handed over a petition regarding safeguarding of passengers, objecting to Uber's licensing renewal.

from Taxi Leaks

12 December 2017

Could Cambridge Have A London-Style 'Uber Ban'? Would They Just Kept Operating Regardless Of Ban?

Uber’s licence to operate in Cambridge is being reviewed to determine whether they are a “fit and proper” group to operate in the city.

In September, transport bosses at Transport for London (TfL) made headlines when they decided not to renew the licence for cab company Uber. The decision is currently being appealed.

Now, with the company’s licence in Cambridge approaching its expiry date, councillors will take a hard look at whether to allow them to keep operating in the city.

At the time, a spokesman for Cambridge City Council said: “We will look closely at the detail of TfL’s decision and the likely appeal Uber has indicated it will lodge against that decision before considering Uber’s operator licence in Cambridge, and whether that licence should be renewed or not.”

Next Monday (December 18), the city council’s Taxi Licensing Committee will discuss whether to renew the private hire operator’s licence held by Uber Britannia Limited.

Uber Britannia Limited was first issued with a Private Hire Operator’s Licence on December 21, 2015 for one year.

Due to Uber not having traded under the initial licence for a whole year, the subsequent renewal application was treated as a new application. The licence was issued on December 21, 2016 for a period of one year.

According to a report due to go before the committee: “Since November 2016, we have received six complaints regarding Uber as an operator.

“Five of these were received on the 15th and 16th November 2016, which was when Uber vehicles first appeared in Cambridge. The complaints related to how the bookings were made.

“Investigations carried out by the Licensing enforcement officers concluded that Uber was acting correctly.”

The report added that: “No complaints have been made to Cambridge City Council from members of the public in regards to journeys taken in Uber vehicles.

“At the time of the inspection, Uber Britannia Limited currently uses four private hire vehicles and drivers licensed by Cambridge City Council.”

Two letters objecting to the renewal of the Operator’s licence have been sent from Panther Taxis Ltd and a joint response from Cambridge City Licensed Taxis (CCLT) and Cambridge Hackney & Private Hire Association (CHPHA).

from Taxi Leaks

One Taxi company For Milton Keynes you will Like

One Taxi company For Milton Keynes you will Like