Taxi and Private Hire Latest News

This page will be regularly updated with information for taxi and private hire trades in Mendip.

Please let us know of any news or events that you believe should be highlighted by emailing licensing@mendip.gov.uk.

When we need to inform you of changes in service/legislation, news or events we will text you, please ensure you tell the Licensing team of changes to your mobile number by emailing:  licensing@mendip.gov.uk.

Coronavirus Guidance for Taxis and PHVs

The guidance for Taxis and Private Hire has been updated as of 20th December 2020, which states the following:

"In a tier 1 area, aside from the driver, you should avoid sharing a taxi or private hire vehicle with someone from outside your household or your support bubble to reduce the risk of transmission.

In tier 2, tier 3 and tier 4 areas, aside from the driver, it is not permitted to share a taxi or private hire vehicle with someone from outside your household or your support bubble unless your journey is undertaken for an exempt reason. For example, if sharing the vehicle is reasonably necessary as part of your work."

To view the full guidance click this link - https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers#taxis-and-private-hire-vehicles

Advice is available on the Gov website for drivers to help keep themselves and their passengers safe. There is also advice on financial help - www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-taxis-and-phvs

Clean Air Zones (CAZ) Bath

The CAZ in Bath is due to be implemented and start charging as of 15th March 2021, full information can be found on Bath and North East Somersets Website: https://beta.bathnes.gov.uk/bath-clean-air-zone

There is a charge for Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles, the responsibility is on the driver to pay within the specified timescale of entering the CAZ.

An easy read leaflet has been created by Bath and North East Somerset Council, which can be viewed here Icon for pdf Bath CAZ leaflet [5.11MB]

Street - Leigh Road Closure

We had reports of a road closure for Leigh Road, Street in January 2021 which could potentially affect the taxi rank. We have spoken to Highways at Somerset County Council who have advised us that the rank will be open as usual, the road closure is the Silver Road junction, a diversion will be in place to avoid this closure.

Letter from Community Health Services Portfolio Holder Regarding Vehicle Idling

The portfolio holder for community health services has written an open letter to all licensed drivers regarding air quality and taxis idling. Please see the letter Icon for pdf here [306.11KB]. As you can see within the letter it requests that any comments or questions go through to chcase@mendip.gov.uk and your comment or question will be allocated to the relevant officer.

DVLA Extends Expiry Dates for Photo Card Licences / Entitlement to Drive

Photo card licences or entitlement to drive that expires between 1 February and 31 December 2020 have been extended for 11 months from the date of expiry.

The DVLA said in its announcement: "Under the changes, drivers whose photocard driving licence or entitlement to drive runs out between 1 February 2020 and 31 December 2020 will have their entitlement automatically extended from the expiry date, for a period of 11 months. Drivers do not need to apply to renew their licence until they receive a reminder before their extension expires.

The initial extension expired at the end of August. This has now been further extended to the end of the year under temporary changes announced by DVLA on 1 September 2020.

MOT & VSI Testing Resuming from 1st August

Mandatory MOT testing is to be reintroduced from 1st August 2020 as COVID-19 restrictions are slowly lifted as announced on the 29th June 2020.

All drivers whose car, motorcycle or van is due for a MOT test from 1st August will be required to get a test certificate to continue driving their vehicle.

Drivers with a MOT due date before 1st August will still receive a 6-month exemption from testing. However, all vehicles must continue to be properly maintained and kept in a roadworthy condition, and people are able to voluntarily get their MOT sooner should they wish, even if they are exempt from the legal requirement.

The announcement: www.gov.uk/government/news/mandatory-mot-testing-to-be-reintroduced-from-1-august

As the VSI tests (previously engineers reports) were extended in line with the MOT, all operators whose car is due for a VSI test from 1st August 2020 will be required to get a VSI certificate to continue driving their vehicle. Vehicles with a VSI due date before 1st August 2020 will still be entitled to the 6 month extension.

Safeguarding Training

Following the recent Licensing Board meeting which took place virtually on Wednesday 10th June 2020 it was voted that safeguarding training will be mandatory for all drivers and they have a year to complete it. It will also be a requirement for all new applicants to complete the training before they are issued a licence.

We are looking to roll it out as online training as soon as possible and then for drivers who are unable to complete the training online, there will be socially distanced training delivered in groups in person. There is no cost for the training.

Any driver who fails to complete the training within the year time limit will have their licence suspended.

There will be more information provided shortly as we look to finalise the training package and begin to roll it out.