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East Riding Council to ask local residents to consider becoming licensed taxi and PHV drivers

Updated: Dec 11, 2023

East Riding of Yorkshire Council is urging residents to explore the option of becoming licensed taxi or private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers as part of their efforts to address a potential future shortfall in the industry.

In line with other areas across the country, East Riding is experiencing an aging workforce, with many current drivers nearing retirement or already having retired.

Preempting the need to attract new drivers to prevent an adverse impact on their transportation services, the council has devised a proactive strategy. Over the next few months, the local authority plans to showcase various business models in the taxi and PHV industry through case studies shared on their social media channels. This initiative aims to provide residents with a valuable opportunity to understand the sector, explore potential interests, and acknowledge the challenges and rewards associated with these roles.

The process of becoming a licensed driver involves an initial meeting with the council's licensing team. During this consultation, aspiring drivers receive necessary guidance and support tailored to their preference of working as self-employed drivers or within established companies.

Potential applicants should be aware that acquiring a licence in the field requires meeting stringent criteria. Enhanced checks are conducted to assess an individual's medical history, criminal background, driving record, and right to work in the UK. Additionally, applicants must successfully pass a localised knowledge test and complete safeguarding training to ensure their understanding of passenger safety.

While there is currently no shortage of licensed drivers in the area, the council is keen on fostering a sustainable and adequate supply for future needs. The campaign plans to actively encourage local residents to consider a career as licensed private hire or taxi drivers.

Councillor Leo Hammond, Cabinet member for planning, communities and public protection, said: "We are taking prudent action now to prevent future problems. Licensed drivers perform an essential transport role across the East Riding, especially in rural areas or during the night time economy, and are vital for our communities to function. There is much more to being a licensed driver than you might think, and we hope that more people will want to consider taking this on, which will benefit both themselves and the areas they serve."

Councillor Hammond added: "Many people don't realise how many different business models are open to licensed drivers. You can work for yourself and choose your own days and hours, perhaps in addition to an existing job, or you can work for a company and enjoy the benefits that can bring.

"It can be very rewarding work - not only can you set your own schedule, but you could end up driving anywhere in the country, and meeting lots of different people. It's a very diverse and rewarding role.

"You can also drive an existing vehicle, get your own private hire vehicle, or even share a vehicle. There really are lots of ways in which you can make the role work for you, and turn it into a successful business opportunity."


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