Hackney carriage vehicle licensing

Hackney carriages are licensed to ‘ply for hire’, i.e. to pick up passengers in the street or whilst waiting at authorised taxi ranks and may also accept pre-booked fares.

Application forms and prices

Vehicles must be suitable in type, size and design.

We will licence any vehicle manufactured or adapted to carry up to 8 passengers (excluding driver) provided it meets the criteria set in the policy.

There is a restriction on the number of hackney carriage proprietor licences.

All vehicles must be in a suitable mechanical condition, safe, comfortable and approved for licensing by the Licensing Authority to operate as a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle. All vehicle proprietors will therefore be required to book an MOT and compliance test on the following occasions:

  • New applications
  • The replacement of a vehicle
  • Twice a year during the licence period
  • At the request of the Licensing Authority where deemed necessary

All MOT tests and compliance checks shall be carried out at Scarborough Borough Council’s garage, Dean Road, Depot, Dean Road, Scarborough, YO12 7QS. Please use this link to make an appointment www.scarborough.gov.uk/taxilicensing

See the Vehicle Compliance Testing Handbook for further information.

Vehicle specification

On a new application, the vehicle must be less than 4 years old from the date of first registration.

The maximum age of a vehicle that may continue to be licensed is 8 years from the date of first registration.

When the licensed vehicle reaches 8 years, it shall be permitted to remain licensed until the licence expires provided it continues to be mechanically sound and passes the vehicle licensing inspection.

Wheelchair accessible vehicles must be less than 5 years old from the date of first registration. These vehicles may continue to be licensed until 10 years from the date of first registration. When the licensed vehicle reaches 10 years from the date of first registration, it shall be permitted to remain licensed until the licence expires provided it continues to be mechanically sound and passes the vehicle licensing inspection.

All hackney carriage vehicles must be solid white in colour.

Further information can found in the taxi and private hire policy.

Application procedure

An application can take up to 5 working days to process from receipt of a valid application.

Licences are valid for 12 months from the date of issue. 

There are 2 stages to the application process:

Stage 1

Once your vehicle has undergone and passed the Scarborough Borough Council MOT and Compliance test, please send us the following:

  • Application form
  • Vehicle registration document (copy)
  • Current insurance certificate (copy)
  • Proof of ownership of vehicle (copy)
  • Appropriate fee 

Please send all applications to:

Licensing Authority, Town Hall, St Nicholas Street, Scarborough, YO11 2HG

We advise that you post your documents, however documents can be hand delivered to the Customer First Centre on St Nicholas Street, Scarborough. 

Stage 2

Once your application has been validated and processed, we will contact you with a date and time to collect your licence and vehicle plates. If you are unable to collect your licence and plates, we will post them to you.

Replacing your vehicle

If you wish to change your vehicle during the period of the licence you must surrender the licence (which includes the licence plate) in respect of the original vehicle.

The process is the same as applying for a new vehicle licence (above) however the application asks you to state if you are applying for a new or a replacement vehicle.  The fee for a replacement vehicle application can be found in the fees list

We will issue a new licence (inclusive of licence plate) in respect of the replacement vehicle. As a result of the current limitation on the number of hackney carriages in the borough, this process will be undertaken in the clear recognition that the original licensee will be granted the new vehicle licence.

This approach will also be taken in respect of vehicles that have been involved in an accident where a temporary replacement vehicle is required. Regardless of the period of time the replacement vehicle is to be used for, the procedure as outlined above must be undertaken for the replacement vehicle, and again when the original vehicle is returned to service. 

Your old plate must be returned to us at your inspection.

Advertising

If you wish to place an advert in or on your vehicle, you will need written consent from the chairman of the Licensing Committee and the director of service delivery or licensing manager. Full details can me found in the taxi and private hire policy.

Changing your vehicle registration number

If you are changing the registration number of your vehicle you must complete an application. This must be returned with a fee and the following information before a new plate and licence can be issued.

  • V5 registration document
  • V948 number plate authorisation vertificate
  • current private hire vehicle licence
  • private hire vehicle plate
  • insurance certificate showing the new registration