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Hackney Carriage and private hire drivers
Before granting a licence, the council must be satisfied that
the applicant is a fit and proper person to hold such a
Stage 1 - Application Process
For an application pack, please contact the council's Licensing
Unit. The pack will contain all the relevant information and forms
required. Please read the information and forms carefully before
you start to complete them. The application process cannot be done
electronically due to an increased risk of fraud, especially
There are no facilities for submitting applications in person,
so you should post your application and original identification by
Royal Mail Recorded Delivery with a payment of £25 (this is an
application fee and is non-refundable). The Licensing Unit will
ensure these are returned to you in the same way.
Applicants must have a satisfactory command of English and
undergo the following checks:
A statutory declaration must be signed in front of a
solicitor or commissioner for oaths (there will be a fee to be paid
directly to the solicitor or commissioner)
Disclosure & Barring Service
There are two levels of disclosure: Enhanced and Standard. The
1997 sets out a list of employments and positions subject to an
Enhanced disclosure. The position of Hackney Carriage and
Private Hire Driver is not on this list. Additionally,
Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Drivers are not a specified
position in the Safeguarding
Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 and as it is not deemed to be a
regulated activity if a child/vulnerable adult hires a taxi in the
street or by telephone privately, the level of check to apply for
However in certain circumstances some drivers will be carrying
out regulated activity when transporting children or vulnerable
adults to or from a regulated activity and it is organised by the
providers of the regulated activity or an organisation working on
their behalf, for example, a Local Authority school
contract or NHS contract. In these circumstances, an Enhanced
disclosure is required. A driver must only carry out this type of
work with an Enhanced disclosure and to undertake such work without
it would be an offence and could result in legal action being taken
against that individual.
Once you have determined which level of disclosure you require
you must pay the relevant fee to Medway Council (a £26 fee for
standard level and £44 for enhanced level), subject to change
Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) check
A Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) check to show the
driving endorsements history and any current points on the
applicant's licence (a £5 cheque, payable to DVLA, should be sent
to Medway Council who will submit the form and cheque to the
DVLA on your behalf.
Group 2 medical check
A group 2 medical check with a registered general
practitioner (GP) to show whether or not an applicant is fit to
drive (as there are some specified
medical conditions that prohibit the council from granting a
licence - there will be a fee to be paid directly to the GP).
Driving Standards Agency (DSA) driving assessment
A Driving Standards Agency (DSA) driving assessment,
specifically designed for applicants who have already passed their
driving test and may have years of driving experience that shows
whether they have a good enough standard of driving to ensure that
their passengers have a safe, comfortable and enjoyable journey
(fees must be paid directly to the DSA.)
Applicants must provide
- three photographs attached to the form of endorsement, taken
against a light background, so that the applicant's features are
distinguishable and in contrast to the background; passport-sized
(45mm x 35mm) showing the applicant's full face, uncovered, without
sunglasses, without a hat or other head-covering, unless the
applicant wears a head-covering due to their religious beliefs (the
Form of Endorsement must be completed by the person who
countersigns the photographs);
- two written and signed character references from people not
related to them who have known them for five years or more;
- a Pass Certificate from the DSA that will assess their driving
and knowledge of the highway code, traffic signs and taxi driving
(bookings and payment for this assessment are to be made directly
- as part of their application for a DBS check, some or all
of the following original documents:
Further examples of documents that the CRB accepts as proof of
identity can be found on page 1 of the guidance booklet,
provided in the application pack.
- a full UK driving licence;
- a passport;
- a birth certificate;
- a marriage certificate;
- a P45 or P60 (or other evidence of their National Insurance
- two proofs of current address, e.g. a recent utility bill or
Applicants should read all the forms carefully before they start
to complete them and make sure that they have all the required
documentation before sending them off. Failure to complete these
forms correctly may delay the checks being completed and/or mean
that the application must be returned.
Medway Council may consider any convictions (including those
spent under the Rehabilitation
of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975) when
determining an application.
Applications are valid for one year from the date of the DSA
Stage 2 - Knowledge test
Applicants must then pass the appropriate knowledge test.
To pass this Knowledge Test you require a pass mark of at
least 80 per cent for Section 1 and 60 per cent for
Section 2. The areas covered in Medway are as follows:
- Cliffe Woods;
- High Halstow;
The tests are held in February and August each year.
Applications must be submitted at least one month before the test
and are added to the knowledge test waiting list. Applicants will
be sent a booking form for the next available test, along with a
deadline date for submission of the form and fee.
Knowledge test booking forms must be completed with the £65 fee.
Cheques should be made payable to Medway Council. If you fail to
return this form and/or pay the fee by the deadline date, you will
not be able to sit the test. The fee is non-refundable and
non-transferable. Bookings are confirmed in writing.
If you fail the test, your DSA Pass Certificate will determine
if you can sit the next available test. Applications are valid for
one year only from the pass date of the DSA Certificate.
Knowledge test Structure
The private hire test will consist of 15 route questions
and 30 prominent places.
The hackney carriage test will consist of 20 routes and 20
Answers for the route questions should contain street
names only and must be the shortest distance from A - B not the
most direct route. You will NOT be awarded marks for giving
directions. Do not take road works into consideration.
Answers for prominent places should be the street where
the place is located. If it is a street or road where there is more
that one in the borough eg High Street, then you need to say which
town it’s in.
We do not provide routes for you to learn.
Further information about the knowledge test
- Tests are kept securely, password-protected on one computer,
until the day of the test.
- Only one officer deals with the production of the
- New tests are created each time.
- There are no specimen tests for applicants to study.
- Tests will be marked within four to five weeks of the day of
- Applicants will be notified of the result in writing.
- The Licensing Unit does not provide results over the
- The result will show the applicant's percentage mark for each
- The Licensing Unit will not enter into any discussion of the
- Test papers cannot be viewed.
- Test papers are shredded and disposed of as confidential waste
three months after the test date.
If everything is completed satisfactorily, a licence will be
issued at a fee of £160 for three years, which may be adjusted
pro-rata based on the date of the CRB check.
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