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TAXI AGE LIMIT ‘NONSENSE’: LTDA hits back at 11-year black cab age limit driver rumours

Updated: Apr 18, 2022

London taxi representatives have hit out at the latest black cab age limit trade rumours which has prompted panic amongst some members of the Licensed Taxi Drivers’ Association (LTDA).

The LTDA called rumours of an 11-year taxi age limit ‘NONSENSE’ after some sections of the taxi industry spread misinformation.

The capital could lose a further 1,228 licensed black cab vehicles over a twelve month period as new age limit rules began in November 2021.

Between 1 November 2021 and 31 October 2022, vehicles that are older than 12 years will be ineligible for licensing. TfL’s latest figures, from 31 August 2021, show that 1,228 vehicles will be over 12 years of age and will not be eligible for licensing from 1 November 2021.

Between 1 November 2022 and 31 October 2023, vehicles that are older than 11 years of age will also be ineligible for licensing. TfL’s latest figures show that 474 further licensed vehicles will be 11 years of age and would no longer be eligible for licensing from 1 November 2022 due to taxi age limit requirements.

Rumours were circulating that the latest drop in age limits actually equated to an 11-year age limit rather than a 12-year age limit as first thought.

The number of taxis in London has nosedived by nearly 4,000 vehicles since the first COVID restriction measures began. There are now only 14,749 (5,486 of which are ZEC taxis), meaning nearly a QUARTER of the wheelchair accessible taxis in April 2020 are currently no longer available to taxi drivers and passengers.

According to Transport for London (TfL) records show there were 18,504 taxis registered in Greater London at the start of the pandemic in April 2020. The decrease has been mainly attributed to the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the industry.

The number of newly licensed electric taxis has steadily increased since COVID-19 restrictions were relaxed, however with the high number of vehicles still set to depart the fleet this year, the recovery to pre-covid vehicle levels may be hampered.

Lloyd Baldwin, LTDA’s Executive Senior Officer, said in TAXI Newspaper: “I had quite a few calls from members this week regarding the age limits on their cabs. They all say they’ve seen on social media and heard around the ranks that there will now be an eleven-year age limit.

“This is of course more nonsense spread by the ‘trade savers’ to hopefully spark some fury or install some fear within the trade. As usual with this sort of thing it’s not as described, there is no change to what’s been in place for the last few years. Disgracefully, the age limit has come down one year every year on 31/10 since 2019 and this October it will now have reached 12 years where it will stay. I do sometimes wonder why ‘normal’ cabbies re-post these rumours without taking the time to check the facts.

“I’ve also been told its going around that we won’t be able to surrender the plate to get another full year before the 31/10/22. Nonsense, the surrendering of plates has been going on ever since the drops in the age limit, so why would TfL stop it now? I think some have read the TfL notice and not quite understood it.

“I don’t blame people either, because the notice wasn’t that clear. I just wish some would seek clarification before posting although there’s some of course that likely do understand it but won’t pass up the opportunity to stir the pot.”


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