Saturday, April 29, 2017

Taxi Alliance Spends The Night With Liverpool Echo Who Were Shocked At What They Saw....

We spent a Saturday night in town with the Taxi Alliance

It is a typical Saturday night in Liverpool city centre , the streets are alive with groups of people partying the night away and having a good time. 

Not me though, as I have been invited out by the Taxi Alliance of Liverpool - the city’s association of black or hackney cabs - to see some of the issues they say are facing as they try to ply their trade.


Jimmy Bradley is the association’s leader and has been driving a cab for decades, he arranged to pick me up near my home in Aigburth at 11pm to begin our tour. 


This private hire car chose to park up in a disabled bay

At the start of the night, Jimmy tells me that black cab drivers are facing numerous difficulties due to the huge influx and subsequent actions of private hire drivers operating in the city centre - particularly at weekends.

The ECHO has previously reported how private hire drivers are flooding into the city with licenses from elsewhere and picking up fares - an issue which has led Mayor Joe Anderson to call for a city region-wide crackdown on the issue and a new universal license for all drivers. 

As we are in Aigburth, Jimmy first takes me down the popular suburban night spot Lark Lane and we get a first glimpse of an issue we will see throughout our trip.

Along a clearly marked taxi rank, which should only be reserved for black cabs, there is a mix of privately owned cars and private hire vehicles.

A private hire driver is parked illegally at a bus stop

Jimmy explained: “As you can see there are plenty of privately owned cars on the rank, but the bigger problem is when its a private hire vehicle.

“If those cars are plying for trade from people coming out of the bars then they are technically uninsured.”

He is right of course, private hire vehicle drivers are only allowed to pick people up who have pre-booked.

If a private hire driver plies for trade on the street, then both the driver and passengers are uninsured in the event of an accident.

Jimmy says there are just 400 taxi rank spaces across the city and with more than 1400 black cabs on the roads it is already a squeeze - so you can see why the Lark Lane scene is frustrating.

City Centre

Next we head towards the city centre and to Seel Street - one of the busiest night spots in Liverpool.

Jimmy informs me that a large swathe of the street actually becomes a black cab rank after 10pm.

I had no idea - and you wouldn’t - because there is not one single space for a hackney to pull into, with privately owned cars and private hire vehicles taking up all of the room.

Jimmy said: “This is what we have to put up with and it is why there are so many black cabs circling round, they have nowhere to stop and this is a rank for our vehicles.”

Private hire drivers parked on the pavement

Jimmy is at pains to tell me that his main issue is the safety implications of private hire vehicles plying for trade with no insurance and if they have come from outside the city, no checks on who they are.

He said: “The problem is that these guys can pull up outside a nightclub and take someone home to Kensington or wherever without anyone checking their background.

“It just seems like anything goes as long as people are being moved out of the city, with no enforcement action being taken.”

Jimmy is not impressed with the efforts of the council in attempting to tackle the issue and throughout the nearly two hours I spent with him I did not see a single officer compared with the scores of offences we witnessed.

But some action is being taken, the council said its nine enforcement officers issued 250 fixed penalty notices for private hires parked on hackney ranks between January and March.

The problem is the sheer volume of private hire cars coming in - it is uncontrollable as things stand.

Plying for trade

A warning sign has not deterred the cars in the background from illegally parking on a black cab rank

I am intrigued about Jimmy’s claims of how many private hire vehicles are breaking the law by plying for random trade off the street instead of waiting for pre-arranged bookings.

We head to the corner of Bold Street and Newington Street - which he says is a ‘private hire hotspot’.

One driver is parked illegally on a yellow line and is looking hopefully out of the window.

I decide to try out Jimmy’s theory and knock on the window and ask how much it would be to take me back to Aigburth.

He tells me it will only be £7-£10, no problem and I am about to hop in before I say I have to ‘check with my mates’.

This is a clear indication of the willingness of private hire drivers to illegally pick up trade at random and it is something we see countless examples of all night.

Direct action

The frustration amongst Liverpool’s black cab fraternity is at breaking point.

Jimmy says things have got to such a point that more and more drivers are taking matters into their own hands to let private hire drivers know they are breaking the law.

And he shows me an example of this when we catch a private hire driver clearly parked up in a taxi rank in Hanover Street.

A quick word from Jimmy and the driver is off - clearly aware he shouldn’t be there - but as Jimmy says, he shouldn’t have to be doing this.


As you can see from our pictures, we came across countless examples of private hire drivers parked illegally, potentially waiting for trade.

And the black cab ranks are not the worst of it - we saw private hires parked at bus stops, in disabled bays and even just on the pavement.

While you can sympathise with the struggles the council faces in terms of drivers flooding into the city - we really got the impression that the city centre is a free-for-all and of course this poses major risks in terms of the safety of the public.

So what are the council doing?

As we have pointed out, 250 fixed penalty notices in the first three months of the year is no small feat for just nine enforcement officers - but it’s nowhere near enough.

The council also prosecuted 11 private hire drivers in March for a variety of offences including illegally plying for trade.

That is because at the moment drivers can get licensed anywhere and head into the city centre and make a good living.

The council’s chair of licensing, Cllr Christine Banks has thanked the ECHO for raising the private hire issue and has explained what work is being done to deal with it.

She said: “I very much welcome the Echo highlighting this issue and we will use the evidence gathered to identify and take action against those who are breaking the law.

“Most of the 2,163 private hire drivers in our city do obey the law, but we have a specific issue in Liverpool with drivers coming in from neighbouring boroughs to ply for trade illegally because of our vibrant night time economy.

“We already run regular operations and issue fines, warnings and prosecutions to hundreds of drivers every year but could do more if we were able to use some of the taxi licensing fees paid to other areas to boost it.

“That is why the Combined Authority is looking at introducing a city-region wide licence covering all six boroughs so we can target hot spots.

“We also need the public’s help in only using properly licensed taxis or pre-book private hire vehicles.

She added: “They are placing themselves in danger as they are not insured if there is an accident. And if people do find a driver operating illegally, then my message to them is to please make a note of the taxi’s details and report it to us so we can investigate.”

And this is something Liverpool’s Liberal Democrat leader Cllr Richard Kemp - who joined me on our taxi tour agrees with.

He said: “We need a major public information activity. I have seen people tonight getting into cars that were clearly not licensed to take them and therefore uninsured.

“We have got to make people aware of the risks you take if you don’t get into a proper Liverpool taxi.”

More Scandal, Lies And Cover Ups From The Conservatives... By Jim Thomas

Over the last few days, drivers have been receiving emails and letters from their MP, in reply to the system, and we've noticed a worrying trend from the Conservative MPs. 

It seems the conservative MPs are under the impression that all Boris's recommendations to make the private hire industry safer, have been implemented. 

It also appears most of the Tory replies contain similar breakdown of supposed events. 

This one below comes from Helen Grant MP:

Boris Johnson, the previous Mayor of London, worked extremely hard to ensure that there is a sustainable future for London's iconic black cabs by helping to bring the trade into the 21st century and create a level playing field for both black cabs and minicabs in London. As a result of a consultation, the Transport for London (TfL) Board approved the following proposals to modernise private hire regulations, and to raise standards in the industry in London, which came into effect in June 2016:

   . A formal English language requirement for drivers.

   . Private hire operators to ensure that customers can speak to someone in the event of a problem with their journey.

   . Even more robust 'hire and reward' insurance requirements.

    . Improved record keeping and real-time provision of driver and vehicle information to TfL to make enforcement even easier and more effective
On your specific point on capping the number of private hire vehicles in London, then London Mayor Boris Johnson asked TfL to investigate the impact and feasibility of removing the Congestion Charge exemption for private hire vehicles in central London to tackle pollution and reduce congestion.

Then we had this reply from the Office of James Berry MP

I should add that I supported Boris Johnson's original proposals because I support London's iconic black cabs. Boris Johnson worked hard to ensure that there is a sustainable future for London's black cabs.  These included requirements for

. A formal English language requirement for drivers

. Private hire operators to ensure that customers can speak to someone in the event of a problem with their journey

. Even more robust 'hire and reward' insurance requirements and improved record keeping and real-time provision of driver and vehicle information to TfL to make enforcement even easier and more effective.

I hope these changes will have a positive impact for black cab drivers.

Also almost identical reply from David Burrowes MP.

Do these Tory MPs seriously not know that Boris's recommendations were not implemented or have been seriously watered down. 

Not only that, we now have another Tory minister who has told lies to the Taxi trade.

Christopher Stephen Grayling PC is a British Conservative Party politician and former author who has been the Secretary of State for Transport since July 2016. He recently stated in answer to a parliamentary question (72004) that at no time had Mayor Sadiq Khan asked for a cap on private hire vehicles in London. 

        Letter From Mayor Khan To Chris Grayling.

The LTDA posted this image on Twitter earlier today, of a letter from Sadiq Khan to Chris Grayling which stops short of accusing the MP of misleading parliament by saying he (Khan) is disappointed that the MP hasn't been fully updated on the matter and offered to sent the MP and his officials any further information if required. 

Going by the growing trend, seen within the Conservative MPs replies to, it appears most of the Tory party haven't been fully updated on this matter.

But then Chris Grayling, prefers to keep people in the dark. 

In a chilling move, debated for less than an hour, the House of Commons decided the public have no right to know if their MP is arrested. The motion was tabled when Grayling was Tory Leader of the House, arguing the naming of MPs under arrest breached their "right to privacy" under the Human Rights Act.

And yet while he was Justice Secretary, Mr Grayling led Government plans to scrap the Human Rights Act.

But the best emails I saw this week was the reply to James Berry MP.

Dear James Berry MP,

Thank you for your e-mail response to my correspondence regarding allegations in the Daily Mail about former Prime Minister David Cameron, former Chancellor George Osborne and Uber and I thank you for writing to the Cabinet Office to ask that the sequence of events be properly investigated so that the record can be set straight and any further investigations taken forward.

I can fully appreciate that you have to balance your thoughts when it comes to your constituents’ problems and those on a national level.

As an elected Member of Parliament you are the custodian of the parliamentary legislation that has been handed down to the various government bodies and their civil servant employees who should make sure that in this case the Private Hire Vehicles (London) Act 1998 (PHV(L)A 1998) is enforced.

It appears that the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer along with some civil servants have been asked for favours from family friends regarding the Uber Platform. All that the national taxi trade is asking is for a public inquire as to if this is true or not, which would settle the matter once and for all.

Uber has stated in a court of law that they are not a transport provider, so one has to ask why were they given a private hire operator’s licence in the first place?

The (PHV(L)A 1998) states that the booking has to be made through a registered private hire operating centre where the records must be kept for inspection should the need be.

The private hire driver cannot accept a booking in their vehicle even if they have a private hire operator’s licence. Therefore, Uber and its driver/partners are acting illegally as the customer is directed straight thorough to the driver, bypassing the registered private hire operating centre as required.

In the last 5 years that Uber has been registered in London as a private hire operator, how many times has the registered private hire operating centre in London been visited and the records inspected, as it appears that their registered private hire operating centre is an empty shell void of any communication equipment or booking records.      

It’s all well and good Transport for London (TfL) Board approving the proposals to modernise private hire regulations, and to raise standards in the industry in London, which came into effect in June 2016, but unless this and the (PHV(L)A 1998) legislation is enforced and the private hire industry complies then there will be no change as Uber and its driver/partners will carry on circumnavigating the parliamentary legislation that is there to protect the British public and its taxi and private hire business model.

Uber may have an effect on reducing the employment figures, but what it is actually doing in reality is massively increasing the benefits budget at the same time.

I look forward to receiving from you the response from the Cabinet Office.

Yours sincerely

(If you want to use this letter to reply to your MP, just copy and paste and add your name here )

Now look at this letter Sen to Theresa May on behalf of Neil Coyle's constituency. This is probably what every Taxi driver was expecting and the fact that Neil Coyle is a Labour MP..... Speaks volumes. 

Friday, April 28, 2017

Government MOT plan to make cars unsafe?

The government is proposing that newly purchased vehicles have their first MOT when they are four years old (rather than three, as per the current requirement).

This information is from the SMMTThey report that the proposal has caused widespread concern from UK motorists who fear that it could lead to unsafe cars being allowed on the roads.

The government argues that extending the wait for MOTs could save an average of £45 over the course of a vehicle’s lifetime. That works out at a saving of £100 million per year for the UK’s motorists. Of course, the counter-argument is that it will cost the car servicing industry to lose the same amount.

In order to put the proposal into action, a public consultation will occur. If successful, it could lead to the new measures being in place as early as 2018.

It seems, however, that the majority of motorists oppose the proposal. YouGov has conducted a survey on the matter, which indicates that 83% of drivers would rather have peace of mind over the safety of their vehicle than an extra £45. 76% of a similar data set back calls from the automotive industry to keep the law as it stands (currently a three-year wait between the purchase of a new vehicle and its first MOT).

What risk does this bring to road safety?

During an MOT, a mechanic rigorously tests the vehicle against legal requirements. This includes examining lights, seatbelts, tyres, brakes and emission levels. Motorists can receive fines of up £1,000 for driving a car without a valid MOT.

Interestingly, many in the car industry actually believe that the current MOT checks are not rigorous enough. They would prefer reform in this area, rather than a new policy that they see as potentially harming the safety of motorists even more.

In reality, most four year old cars should pass an MOT with flying colours. Indeed, the Department for Transport points out that improvements in manufacturing standards mean that new vehicles stay roadworthy for much longer nowadays.

However, as AA President Edmund King said, the new proposal could see an increase in the number of cars on the road with “faulty tyres and lights,” which an MOT would address and which enhanced manufacturing standards have not necessarily impacted. King did also acknowledge, however, that the new measures would bring “cost and time savings for drivers.”

What do you think about the government’s new proposal? Would you take the £45 saving over the full peace of mind regarding vehicle safety? Let us know in the comments section below

GMB Announce Uber To Get A One Year Licence Renewal And Good Law Project Ready To Issue Proceedings


At 5:41am this morning 28April 2017, the Branch Secretary of the GMB Union made this statement about the relicensing issue concerning instant the hail app company Uber:

He was then asked by a respect trade voice if this was a fact, or just a prediction, to which he made this further reply. 

Although Steve has said that Uber will be granted a one year operators licence, this has nothing to do with the scandalous controversy, which alleges members of a previous government administration and their friends and colleagues, were implicated in putting pressure on the former Mayor of London Boris Johnson, to go easy on Uber. 

The one year operators licence is actually a stop gap measure by TfL while the consultation for a massive increase in licence fees take its course. 

If the consultation goes TfL's way, which consultations seem to have a habit of doing, then it could get very expensive to be a PHV operator in London. The largest companies (Uber included in this bracket) will have to find £1.6m plus £68 per mobile vehicle. 

But all this to one side, according to the GMB branch secretary, Uber's relicensing is already a done deal.

Funny how our trade has to turn to a minicab Union to get this type of information !

Other news released today:
The Good Law Project has today stated that their Uber claim has been drafted and is ready to go. 
The say they are currently taking advice from a specialist costs QC and will issue proceedings shortly. 

This is a screen shot of one of TfLs PDF's you can download. The passage is unbelievable and looks like it was written by a 9 year old child.

They know the problem, but they have no solution! And could someone from TfLTPH please explain to me, what a private Taxi is ?

Breaking News : 

LTDA have issued follow up letter objecting to TfL re licensing Uber, it is now available to download online:-

As McDonald's Make Uber Announcement : Taxi Drivers And Their Families Announce Boycott Of McDonalds.

TfL CO's standard fare, big Mc and fries can now be delivered to a rank while badge and billing Taxi drivers. It's not like they need the exercise!

London's Taxi drivers (and their extended families) have just vowed never to walk through the Golden Arches again, after McDonalds announce they are to partner with Uber to have their food delivered. 

The fast-food chain is currently riding a wave of success founded on several prosperous initiatives, including all-day breakfast, aggressive soft-drink promotions, and a makeover of the Big Mac.

This killer combination (possible killed more Americans than bullets) has led to exceptionally strong first-quarter sales, shooting the stock up to an all-time high. 

But in London, they will soon see a loss of well over 100,000 customers as cabbies boycott the store after the announcement.

The move was reported yesterday by Crain's Chicago Business, which broke the story on its website:

McDonald's plans to expand its relationship with Uber Technologies as it seeks to offer delivery of its food to customers in more U.S. cities.

The Oak Brook-based burger chain, which has been testing delivery through the UberEats mobile app in about 200 restaurants in Florida since December, said today it will launch delivery in several cities by the end of June.

"We're encouraged about the start we've had," CEO Steve Easterbrook said on a conference call with analysts and investors. "We are not in test mode, we are expanding."

I know what you're thinking:

Who in the world wants McDonald's fast food delivered? It's not even that great when it's fresh.

And it's not just in London.....
Taxi social media pages from around the world are announcing similar bans.

At present, just go to any a Taxi rank in London and you will find many drivers with McD coffee cups in their drinks holders. Taxi cabs can be seen constantly day and night in the queues at drive throughs. 

Last night, I spoke to drivers on ranks and in a main Taxi restaurant and the drivers appear to be wholly united in their ban on big Mcs, coffees and soft drinks. 

One driver remarked:
"We announced a boycott of Mansies Pie and Mash Shops and next day they announced they would drop the Ubereats contract and the same with the Bagel shop in Brick a Lane"

He went on to say:
"Our families health can only improve by a Maccy D's ban. Now you don't even have to ge up off the sofa and make an effort to get there, they'll come to you (probably stone cold). You ever tried their fries cold ?"

Set to profit from this major commercial mistake will be the company who has shown more support to the London Taxi trade than any other, Pret A Manger. Twice a year they give free coffees out to cab drivers who only have to show their badge to get the free refreshment (which is also the best coffee on the market). 

So the London Taxi trade, and going by social media many Taxi trades around the world say fair well to the ginger headed clown, as another American firm joins the circus of fools.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Counter Terrorism operation in Willesden - Four arrested and woman shot

During an ongoing counter terrorism investigation this evening, Thursday, 27 April, armed officers entered an address in Harlesden Road, NW10, shortly before 1900hrs.

During the operation, a female, who is one of the subjects of the investigation, was shot by police. The woman, aged in her twenties, has been taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service. 

Due to her condition, she has not been arrested at this time and remains under police guard at hospital. We await an update on her condition.

Four people have now been arrested. The first, a 20-year-old man was arrested near to the address. A male aged 16 and woman aged 20 were arrested at the address. 

A 43-year-old woman was arrested in Kent a short while later.

All four have been arrested on suspicion of the commission, preparation and instigation of terrorist acts under section 41 of the terrorism act 2000.

They are currently in custody at a south London Police station. 

The address and persons connected with it had been under observation by counter terrorism officers as part of an ongoing intelligence led operation.

This incident is not connected to the arrest in Whitehall earlier today. 

In line with established post incident procedures, the incident has been referred to the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards. 

This matter has also been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission as a matter of course.
There are no other reported injuries. Enquiries continue. 

Searches at the address are ongoing, as well as further searches at linked addresses across London.

Romania: Hundreds Of Taxis And Buses Protest Against Uber.

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) - Hundreds of taxi and bus drivers protested outside Romania's government offices on Wednesday to demand that Uber and other online ride service be outlawed.

Drivers parked some 200 taxis and buses outside the office buildings in the capital, disrupting transport in the already crowded city, and blew vuvuzela horns.

The protest, which had been planned to last all day, ended early after the government agreed to pass an ordinance within days better regulating taxi services.

Minister for Public Consultation and Social Dialogue Gabriel Petrea met with some of the protesters and the two sides signed a protocol where the government pledged to pass the ordinance within 30 days.

There were no details immediately available how Uber would be affected.

The Confederation of Licensed Transport Operators says it wants "online technology platforms that provide unauthorized taxi services to be outlawed," to protect licensed carriers.

Uber says it is a ride-sharing service with transparent costs and its drivers pay taxes. It says some 250,000 clients have used its services in the Romanian capital and other major cities in the past two years.

Taxi drivers blow into vuvuzelas during a protest outside the government headquarters in Bucharest, Romania, Wednesday, April 26, 2017. Some 200 taxis and buses have parked outside the government offices in Romania's capital, Bucharest, demanding that Uber and other online taxi services be outlawed in the country. 

Source : Daily Mail 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Whats On The Horizon : A New Greener Horizon, Or Project Horizon By Jim Thomas.

   After six demos and two all party engagements, the signs are still going up

I remember, many years ago, the Metirpolitan Public Carriage Office, writing to every licensed Taxi driver saying "their must be no, 'no go areas' in London for Taxis". 
"You will be expected to go to any destination anywhere within a six mile radius or within one hour in duration and their must be no exceptions". 

Now we have a Mayor, in charge of a Transport body (TfL), bent on the destruction of our 360 year old trade by creating 'no go areas' for London Taxis.

We've had 8 years of protest, demonstration, consultation after consultation, engagement and negotiation. Apart from the killer on the knowledge protests, which saw top TfL directors moved sideways, we've had little or no success. 

Now, after six demonstrations and two bouts of negotiations, we are about to lose access through the Bank Junction, financed by TfL to speed up bus times. 
This is about to be followed by a complete ban from Tottenham Court Road, then Oxford Street and possibly Baker Street.

But caught up in the middle of this attack on our trade, are the unfortunates, and they are the disabled and less mobile members of the public. Mayor Khan is about to steal the freedom of the disabled, to shop wherever they like, in order to give way and make more room for the able bodied shoppers who he hopes will travel forwards and backwards on the Tubes new Elizabeth line. 

The most scandalous aspect of these plans being, there are two wheelchair users on the board of TfL who have said nothing in defence of the disabled's right of access and to shop on Oxford Street.

There is as always a hidden agenda and Khan obviously feels he can supply many extra passengers to the new line by making it as difficult as possible for taxis to get to popular destinations around central London. 

Taxi Leaks spoke of Project Horizon several years ago and TfL flatly denied it ever existed.

We predicted back then, that under this agenda, there would be Taxi no go areas, followed by Private Hire rest ranks where drivers could wait to be hired and PH WAVs rank spaces at mainline stations. 

Remember the Gold, Silver and Bronze PH ranking system? It's still there in the background as TfL never fully scrap an idea, they just shelve it till the time is right. 

With Country Boy Rett Russell in charge of London's Ambulance service, it's only a matter of time before we see NHS Uber ranks at hospitals around Greater going on TfL's present form, outside Greater London too. 

As Harry Wall said, "History is there to learn from".
Seems our trade has learned nothing

After years of negativity and deterioration, fighting the unfair and elitist United Trade Group, did we not all cheer when Val Shawcross announced the UTG would be scrapped and the gagging order known as the engagement policy would be assigned to the shredder. 

So what is plan B.
It seems the old United Trade Group is to be replaced by the new United Trade group, and the old gagging order known as the engagement policy, is to be replaced by a new gagging order called the new engagement policy. Again the right to exclude any group they see fit to exclude.

And the price for signing away the right to criticise TfL in print or on social media, is a seat at the old fold up table.

Towards the end of this year, the Taxi trade will be expected to purchase the new electric TX5, even though neither TfL, the GLA, the Mayor or our trade Orgs, have bothered to explore the health risks associated with the radiation given off from the bank of batteries inside the vehicle. 

Not only has TfL put us in the predicament of not being able to afford this vehicle by selling our work to a NonDomicile company that pays little to no tax, we now learn this week that the government is likely to scrap the subsidy they were going to give Taxis and private hire to go electric.

But tell me this Sadiq, will the new electric Taxis be allowed to use all these no go areas and eventually replace the dirty buses that are running round, 100% on diesel, as replacement batteries proved to be too expensive ?  

A blast from Taxi Leaks past December 2013
          DEATH BY DESIGN 

    And no one took a blind bit of notice 


             PCS boss John Murphy 

Remember PCS the Tfl Registered PH Outfit who have a contract with Emirates Airport ?

A couple of years back I was asked  to investigate their Lewisham Office.

There was absolutely no sign of activity at that address, which was alleged to be no more than a front for the company who work mainly in Manchester and Newcastle.

This was reported to TfL who never answered the emails. 

We've been informed that TfL's Operators Licence has finally been revoked, since five Directors were convicted of Fraud at Chester Crown Court and receiving prison sentences totalling nine and a half years. 

Surprisingly, Emirates have continued to use PCS Events, even though the TfL operators licence has been revoked and gone so far as to issue a statement defending the company. 
PCS has been serving our passengers since 2007 and currently handles around 85,000 trips a year, without any incident on record,”

Acting upon further Information from a licensed Taxi drivers association in Manchester, Photo's have been taken showing TfL registered PCD cars still working, still picking up at Manchester Airport in the VIP pick up area.

TfL Licensed Vehicles photographed on Friday 21-4-17, picking up passengers in the VIP area Manchester Airport.

Other vehicles seen licensed by TfL and working from the VIP pick up area are:

If these vehicles are no longer registered with an Operator, they are in fact not Licensed to Pick up anywhere.

This matter has now been reported to TfL.
Plus, our contacts in Manchester have reported the matter there and at Newcastle Airport, where I believe vehicles from PCS are also Operating.

If these cars are operating illegally, then their TfL licence must be revoked, which means they will also be uninsurable to use for hire and reward anywhere in the country.

We have to ask ourselves why a company based up north, would go to the trouble of registering an operating centre in London, then drive it's vehicles all the way down to NSL passing stations in the capital, when they can get vehicles licensed in the cities where they operate. 

Why are they coming to London to get the vehicles licensed?
What incentives are there to be licensed at NSL?
Are these vehicles being given an easy time at NSL centres?

We've seen in the past a case -when TfL was under the directorship of John Mason- where a West London private hire company, produced an envelope full of roundels, when police officers turned up at the operators address. It later transpired that none of their vehicles had attended TfL passing stations and the roundels had been sent out by one was ever prosecuted for this either.

Could it be that this practise is still wide spread and vehicles from around the country are being licensed by post?

After the recent private hire medical and topographical tests scandal, anything is possible as time and time again, TfL have shown they are not fit for purpose in respect of being a licensing authority.

For a more in-depth report published by Licensed Transport Undercover, click on this link below