Monday, November 30, 2015

Your chance to voice your opinions about TfL's consultation on card payments.

TfL recently held a consultation about Credit Card payments in regards to the licensed Taxi trade. Many drivers felt the questions were loaded in favour of an agenda already decided by TfL and decided not to take part. Therefore, only 349 licensed Taxi drivers actually responded to the consultation. 

AskPOB have decided to redress this issue and are carrying out a survey, asking the questions that drivers feel should have been asked in TfL's consultation. 
Please give this survey your full support.

  Dear Driver
Here's your chance to voice your opinions about TfL's consultation on card payments which managed to get just 349 responses. So, please take part today to help create a true reflection of trade opinion.

AskPOB is currently conducting an independent survey to establish driver opinion on card payment solutions and possible changes to taxi tariffs. AskPOB is an impartial third party, working in collaboration with trade organisations and groups to reach as many drivers as possible, and to understand how drivers would like to best use card payment facilities and at what cost.

The last driver consultation conducted by AskPOB yielded over 1,400 responses and delivered a comprehensive voice from the London taxi trade on recent changes at Tavistock Place. 

By completing this survey, AskPOB will once again ensure that London taxi drivers are being heard. 

AskPOB is a free subscribed service giving all drivers a voice.

Please use this link for survey: >Click Here<

Many thanks and be lucky,

Perry Richardson


It's no good just moaning that your representative org isn't doing anything, or they at not listening to your worries. It's no good just talking to other cabbies in shelters or on ranks. 

You have the opportunity of shaping the policy that's made on your behalf by turning up at branch meeting. 

The Shape Of Things To Come? Plus Uber Drivers New Delivery Service.

A young mother has accused an Uber driver of calling her a “black c***” and launching a brutal assault after a row over making multiple drop-offs.

Paramedic Taleka White, 27, says she was dragged out of a minicab and punched twice in the face after her driver flew into a rage in Addiscombe, south London, in the early hours of Sunday.

She says her face smashed into the ground after she was sent flying by the second blow.

The man allegedly called her a “stupid black c***” and a “black b***” during the ordeal at about 3.30am on Sunday morning.

The mother, who has a four-year-old son, is unsure why he became so aggressive, but says he grew angry after some confusion over the destinations.

The women had taken a lift using the minicab app after a night out in Croydon town centre on Saturday and agreed to make separate drops, in the same fashion the proposed UberPool will operate.

She said the driver was polite at first but became rude during the journey when her friend told him he had missed the turning to her house.

He then started to insult Ms White after she continued the journey alone.

Ms White said: “He started to abuse me, saying ‘you stupid black c***, your friend gave me the wrong directions’.

“I sat in the back of the car crying, I wasn’t sure what he was going to do.”

Although frightened, she continued the journey to her mother’s home in Addiscombe – where the driver allegedly became violent.

“He pulled up outside my mum’s and as I was gathering my stuff, he got out and opened the door and dragged me out,” she said.

“As he did this I started wailing and he punched me in my face. 

“I put my hands up and was screaming to get my mum’s attention and he punched me again.

“I went flying down the road and landed on my face. He ran into his car and drove off.”

Ms White was left terrified and injured, with a lump on her head, bruising and a bloodied wrist and knuckles.

She visited A&E on Sunday and needs to return to have an X-ray on her hand.

She called on Uber – which she says has not even refunded the journey – to ban the driver.

“He should not be allowed to work for a cab firm ever again,” she said.

“It’s disgusting – Uber should not be employing someone like that. I just don’t want it to happen to anyone else.”

The matter has been reported to police but Scotland Yard was not yet able comment.

Should be interesting when Uber start their UberPool service when their drivers will be expected to pick up, upto 4 separate, unrelated passenger. 

Not only could you be getting into a car driven by a stranger....would could be sitting next to 3 other strangers on rout.

Meanwhile News Of Uber Driver's New Deliver Service:

Mini-Cab driver Waseem Anwar Choudry, 31, of Chichester Court, Slough gave his wife eight dresses to bring back from Pakistan, which unbeknown to her had 3.5 kilogs of the class A drug – worth almost half a million pounds – sewn inside.

Border Force officers found the drugs in Nazreen Anwar’s bag after she stepped off a flight from Islamabad on June 28, and she was arrested.

In interviews with National Crime Agency investigators the 28-year-old said she had been in Pakistan for a two week holiday, and claimed her husband had given her the dresses to bring back, saying she did not know the drugs were inside.

Choudry had been due to fly back a few days after his wife but did not board the plane, and he was arrested by the National Crime Agency six weeks later attempting to re-enter the country at St Pancras International rail terminal, having travelled from Pakistan via Paris.

A must watch video on Uber's new service


Saturday, November 28, 2015

UCG On Night Ops With The Tout Squad.

On Friday November 13th, Trevor Merralls and I were granted very rare full access to the Mets undercover Cab Enforcement Unit and were invited to join them for a night to observe what they do and how they do it.

We met at 9pm and were warmly welcomed at their Kings Cross base. The team is led by Inspector Tracy Allison, under her are 5 sergeants and 55 PCs. It seems a lot but bearing in mind that’s to cover 31 London Boroughs 24/7 it really is not. The two proactive teams (those on the streets) are split into two groups of 24.

As they are specialist officers and if numbers are diminished through sickness, injury or leave they cannot draft in untrained temporary staff, with the exception of decoys, so you can see they are understaffed. Staffing levels notwithstanding, we can tell you they do an excellent job, are totally dedicated and their professionalism is second to none.

At the briefing Tracy told us that they work on intelligence received from the Met, TFL and cab drivers who report touts etc.

The number one area for touting and sexual assaults is Shoreditch. With that in mind we got in an unmarked car with Tracy and her Sergeant ,Mike and headed toward Shoreditch High St.

Eventually we and the second car parked in Garden Row and waited.Two decoys were situated within 30 yards in Gt Eastern St. No tout would ever know that the young woman on the corner and man opposite were Police. They blend in perfectly.

Our in car teams were in constant contact with the decoys and each other; completely invisible to the touts. Tracy explained that there is a marked difference between those deemed illegally Plying for Hire and those blatantly Touting.

To clarify this, if a PHV is empty and sees a prospective fare with their hand up , if they stop and the prospective passenger asks to be taken to wherever, this is classed as P4H.

If a PHV sees a person who looks like they may be needing a ride home, stops and asks them if they need a cab, its Touting.

The reason the CEU target touts as oppose to those Plying for Hire is as follows:

• Illegal P4H, although a criminal offence, it is not what is known as a ‘Recordable Offence’, by which I mean the police cannot take a DNA sample when the suspect is arrested.
• Touting is Recordable and a DNA sample is always taken upon arrest
• DNA samples from touts have led to many convictions for crimes committed in the past, which is why the CEU will wait to arrest one.

In a perfect world they would have the manpower to nick both P4H chancers and Touts. But unfortunately, the world in which we work is far from perfect.

We saw a number of PHVs pull up next to the decoys and then drive away. But, after some 40 minutes we had a bite. 

A car stopped next to a decoy and engaged in conversation, on a hand signal our car blocked the the tout from the front and the second car blocked him from reversing. It happened so quickly he had hope to escape. The CEU have this blocking exercise perfected.

This character had no licence, no insurance and was suspected of taking and driving away. He was arrested and taken to a local custody suite and the car was seized and driven to a police pound.

Another unlicenced tout was arrested in Fairchild St and taken to a different custody suite to be charged.

At this point the Shoreditch area was seen to be ‘burnt’, Police jargon meaning that their presence there was known and it was time to move on.

Tracy and Mike decided that we would then drive to Camden, another toutshotspot.

On the way Tracy called her colleague who had taken the first tout to be charged and asked if anything was known about him.

It was, she immediately rang the officer who was impounding the vehicle. That was when I heard the most chilling words;
Search that car for a Rape Kit‘ !!
A rape kit consists of a rope, gloves, weapon etc.

It transpired he had serious previous, including the worst crime toward a woman. 
He was a dangerous predator and who knows what he had in mind that night.

I must reiterate that this person was unlicensed but there are many more like him on the streets.

We next parked in Camden and the decoys were deployed. After a while a very suspect PHV stopped. The driver got out and was about to approach our man but a marked police car with blue lights flashing, on a completely unrelated job, stopped within 20 yards of us and the prospective tout did nothing.

We then moved on to Camden High St and it didn’t take long before our decoys were touted, this time by a licenced PHV driver. He was arrested and taken away for questioning and charging.

As I said earlier each of these touts can have DNA samples taken which is of great help to the police.

That night was a real eye opener as to the scale of the problem; it is huge. 

The CEU do their level best to fight the problem but are outnumbered. They certainly shouldn't be blamed for any inadequacy, it’s not their fault. It’s a game of Cat and Mouse. 
On Friday it became clear there are many more mice than cats.
(We have not forgotten who ran the mouse breeding programme)

Angela Clarkson

UCG Secretary

Friday, November 27, 2015

New Free Currency App : Take Foreign Bank Notes, Give Change And Receive Bonus


Billions are lost to Merchants throughout the United Kingdom because they only accept pound sterling. WorldCash, The Currency App lets Merchants accept foreign currency as easily as pounds. The WorldCash Currency App is downloaded FREE and lets businesses like retailers, restaurants, hotels and taxis accept foreign banknotes as easily as they currently take pound notes.

You select the currency you are being offered and you are guided through the transaction, told how much currency to take and how much change to give in pounds. Then you just change the banknotes at any location shown on the App to change back into pounds plus a “cash cushion” to cover fluctuations. Guaranteed.

How much business have you lost because you and your customers only accepted pounds?

With WorldCash you can:

Expand your customer base
Close sales you never could before
Increase your profit
Exchange back to pounds 24/7

Click Here For Link To Download :

Westminster To Consider Borough Wide 20MPH Speed Limit

A  20mph speed limit could be introduced on almost all residential roads and high streets in London by the end of the decade, according to the mayor’s transport advisor.

Motorists could be restricted to that limit within the M25 on all but a major arteries into the capital, according to Isabel Dedring, deputy mayor for transport.

Westminster City Council is now to consult on whether to relax its policy towards 20mph speed limits. 

Most central London boroughs have already implemented 20mph limits across residential streets but up till now, Westminster has resisted the policy, incurring hash criticism from campaign group 20’s Plenty for Us. 

Westminster is now to seek views on 20mph zones and limits in a consultation on a draft walking strategy, expected to be published before the end of the year. 

spokesman for the AA said: “In principle we have nothing against 20mph zones although you have to remember when you are slowing traffic down you slow down the working life of the city.”


Just read on the forum, that a driver has been told by his passenger, they intend to close all gates into Regent Park outer circle. Residents are to be issued with a key fob to get in and out of the gates, which will be closed to all other traffic. More news about this as and when we get it.