Apply for a Vehicle Licence

Before purchasing a vehicle you should check that it meets the requirements set out in the Hackney Carriage and Private Hire handbook.

  • Have four doors of a size to permit easy access
  • Be able to permit the specified number of passengers to be carried in comfort and safety
  • Be in ‘pristine’ condition (exterior and interior) and maintained in such a condition
  • Provide adequate luggage space within secure compartment for the number of passengers for which the vehicle is licensed (3.5 cu.ft. per passenger (0.09m3 or 100 litres)
  • Carry a first aid kit and fire extinguisher
  • Meet age criteria
  • Rear tinted windows must be no darker than legally permitted front side tinted windows

Booking an Appointment to Licence a Vehicle

Once you are ready to licence your vehicle and you are satisfied that it meets our requirements you should contact us on 01424 787550 to book an appointment to see a Licensing Officer.

You will need the following information when you contact us:

  • Are you licensing a Hackney Carriage/ Private Hire Vehicle?
  • The vehicle registration number
  • The make, colour and model
  • The number of passengers to be licensed

Vehicle Licensing Appointment

You will then need the following to your appointment:

  • Our Vehicle licence application form 
  • Have a valid insurance certificate for the carriage of passengers for hire and reward, either by “Public Hire” (Hackney Carriage) or “Private Hire” (Private Hire)
  • Vehicle Compliance Test (VCT) certificate and inspection. See our Vehicle Compliance Testing Page for more information.
  • V5C vehicle document
  • Make a payment for the vehicle licence

Vehicle Licence Plates

Once the documentation has been checked, payment received and the vehicle inspected, the vehicle licence plates will be prepared. 

  • The internal (small) plate must be displayed inside the vehicle in a position where it can be seen from inside and outside the vehicle.
  • The external (large) plate must be affixed to the outside rear of the vehicle. 
  • The two door badges must be affixed to the top half of the rear doors.

Age limit for vehicles

Details of the age limits on new vehicles.

Vehicle compliance testing (VCT)

Details of Vehicle Compliance Test (VCT) certificate and inspection forms.

Exemption Certificates

Details of Exemption Certificates, which will permit the use of the vehicle without the need to display vehicle licence plates.

Hackney Carriage meters

Details of meters that must be installed on all licensed Hackney Carriage vehicles.

Rear door signs

Information about rear door signs which you are required to display Council approved door signs on the upper panel of both rear passenger doors.