Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Dear Leonard,

Thank you for your email about my views on Uber and London's Taxi trade. Apologies for the delay in replying.

I am a great supporter of London's Taxi Trade. Over the last two years I have worked hard to ensure TfL's poor record in regulating the Taxi and Private Hire trade is fully exposed, including publishing the report Future Proof, as chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee.

It is not by chance that the Black cab has been voted by Londoners as the most iconic piece of London transport design. There were also very good reasons why the closing ceremony of the Olympic and Paralympic Games so prominently featured London Taxis. Taxis are a vital part of London's transport infrastructure and are recognised and respected around the world.

One other important feature of London's Taxis is their access standards for disabled people, with every Taxi being fully wheelchair accessible (and having other important access features) since 2000.

To find out more about my views on the London Taxi Trade I do hope this article I wrote for Taxi Newspaper is of interest. The article starts on page 5.

    Caroline talking with the Save Our Black Taxis Group

While Uber cannot be prohibited I do think it is wrong that as a company they have had such special access to both Government Ministers and TfL. I am also concerned about the way 10 Downing Street has not been open over its lobbying on behalf of Uber as can be seen in the conflicting information given in these two freedom of information requests, with TfL admitting that they have corresponded with 10 Downing Street, but 10 Downing Street denying they have any records of corresponding with TfL on the issue of the regulation of private hire vehicles. Reply.pdf

Clearly the current Mayor and TfL have failed to keep up with the pace of technological change to regulate effectively the growing number of private hire operators.

My proposals for maintaining effective choice for passengers and protecting passenger safety include:

Doubling the number of dedicated taxi and private hire compliance officers to 165 within a year to ensure all Private Hire Drivers are fully covered by 'hire and reward' insurance and their vehicles are safe.

Seeking to introduce a cap on the number of Private Hire Vehicles in London. The Mayor of London can in effect initiate a Bill in Parliament and I would use this mechanism.

   Talking with Taxi Drivers on the street.

TfL to bulk purchase a fleet of new zero emission capable Taxis and lease and sell them to Taxi drivers and garages. I am concerned that the current price of the new zero emission capable Taxis will be a barrier to their uptake, unless TfL takes the step of directly purchasing a large order of them and driving the price down.

I would retain access to bus lanes for Taxis and take firm action against Private Hire Vehicles which avoid paying the Congestion Charge when they do not have a booking.

Full details of my policies can be seen in my manifesto:

Thank you writing to me on this important issue.

With very best wishes,

Caroline Pidgeon

Liberal Democrat Candidate for Mayor of London 


Anonymous said...

Unfortunately the phrase.. trying to close the stable door after the horse has bolted springs to mind.

Anonymous said...

This is the chair person of the GLA transport commitee that fully backed Boris Johnsons emissions strategy/ Taxi Age Limit. She knows the damning lies that created it, and the content of the Defra report that proved beyound any doubt that Euro 4,5 and 6 produce more pollution than older 15 year taxis.

Did she make any request to the Mayor that the Taxi Age Limit be scrapped. NO SHE DIDN'T!

Pidgeon isn't the stand up person she claims to be; she's all about her upwardly mobile political asperations. She won't come close in the Mayoral race. And as far as I am concerned she can put her electric cab rental scheme and TFL where the sun don't shine.

Be lucky.

Anonymous said...

And last night I earned £31 for a nights work in town,so a new vehicle is unaffordable for me now & many others ?

Andy said...

Anon 6.14 If thats true, the Taxi trade is well and truly finished, in the guardian today it is claimed, thirty thousand londoners are downloading the uber app every day. It is clear that uber is their preferred mode of transport. And on top of that we have the TFL engineered traffic to contend with, clearly designed to encourage people to use the super dooper crossrail when it opens.