New taxi design coming to Winchester as Council propose one of two new designs

Image credit: Winchester City Council

Winchester taxis could soon take on a new look as council members propose two new designs, as licensing members push for uniformed vehicles.

The city council is in the process of updating its licensing policy and the draft criteria has been approved.

Among the changes are updates to vehicle liveries, stricter rules on wheelchair accessible cabs and the age of the cars allowed to be used.

All licensed cars will have to be a standard white paint colour, display permanently fixed signs on the front doors, and have the licence plate fixed to the rear of the vehicle, by 2023.

During a Licensing & Regulation Committee meeting held on Tuesday 15 September, Licensing officer Claire Humphreys told the members: "Around 84 per cent of people who answered our consultation survey agreed that the door signs should be there, and 87 per cent said that taxis should have fixed rear plates.

"Our main reason and priority for these changes is for the safety of the public."

In addition, the council has said it is also looking at making taxis more accessible to wheelchair users, by making sure more wheelchair accessible vehicles have rear loading as well as side loading doors.

New drivers will also receive Disability Awareness Training before starting, and current drivers will be need to pass this before 31 August 2021.

Payment options were also on the agenda, with proposals stating that all licensed vehicles must carry a contactless payment device to ensure that vulnerable adults can still get home without the need for cash, which may otherwise encourage them to walk.

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