Taxi drivers in Newcastle have said that passengers could face higher cab fares, after losing a contract to service the taxi rank at Newcastle Airport.
They have also expressed fears that they could lose their livelihoods and have urged Newcastle City Council to intervene, after private hire firm Arrow Cars won the tender to take over the airport's service from May.
As a result passengers will be unable to get a cab off of the rank at the airport, and will have to book a minicab online, over the phone, or at the booking office inside the terminal.
Chronicle Live reported that as a result Taxi drivers fear that129 taxi drivers from will lose their livelihoods and reduce passenger choice.
It is feared that the public will be inconvenienced and those with disabilities will face transportation problems.
One driver said that Newcastle Airport has had a taxi rank for 52 years. We are not taxi drivers, we are ambassadors.
However, the furious taxi drivers are not taking the situation lying down, they have now started a petition to save Newcastle Airport’s taxi rank
It is believed that despite being a shareholder in the airport the council have no jurisdiction to intervene in the decision
Airport Taxis will be terminating their contract on April 30.
A letter from the council sent to the Airport Taxis Association stated that the contract with the airport had given cabbies exclusive rights to ply-for-hire at the airport because it was on private land to which Newcastle International Airport permit access, however the arrangement was not one in which the council has a role, and as such Newcastle City Council cannot interfere.
Image source: Geograph
Image author: Derek Harper