Guidance for Applicants for a Driver's Licence
Under the provisions of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 a Local Authority shall not grant a licence to drive a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle unless:
- they are satisfied that the applicant is a fit and proper person to hold a driver's licence, and
- the applicant is 19 years of age or over and has held a full DVLA licence for at least 12 months.
The following forms must be completed in full and submitted to the Licensing Authority with the relevant fee:
Application form for licence to drive
The application must include two passport type photographs and the applicant's DVLA licence. A maximum of six penalty points are permitted upon first application.
The medical form must be signed by the applicant's own GP. There will be a charge by the GP for this medical examination as to the applicant's fitness to hold a hackney or private hire driving licence. Persons who hold a current LGV or PCV driving licence will be required to submit to a medical every three years in line with every other applicant. At 70 years of age the medical requirement will be an annual event.
Driving Standards Agency Proof of Test Pass
From 1 April 2008 all new applicants must take the Private Hire/Hackney Carriage Assessment. This assessment is designed to test the skills required to drive a taxi safely, lasts for approximately 40 minutes and can be taken locally in Carlisle or Workington. Application packs are available from the Licensing Team and arrangements for the test, including payment of the fee, should be made directly with the DSA.
From 1 April 2008 all new applicants must pass Eden District Council's Knowledge Test. Arrangements to take the test should be made with the Licensing Team - this can be done at the same time as the criminal records check. The written test, which applicants will be given 30 minutes to complete, consists of five parts: (i) locations and premises; (ii) villages; (iii) routes; (iv) rules and regulations; (v) fares and meter. Applicants to drive private hire vehicles will only be required to take part (iv) of the test.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Check
The applicant will be required to obtain an enhanced DBS check from the Disclosure and Barring Service. This check, along with a self declaration, is mandatory for all new drivers and every three years on renewal of licence. In the intervening years, a statutory declaration, completed in the presence of a Commissioner of Oaths or a Solicitor, must be provided when renewing the licence. DBS application forms, together with guidance notes, may be obtained by calling the Licensing Team.
Consideration of Convictions
The Licensing Authority will consider all convictions on their merit having regard to its own Statement of Policy (PDF: 42Kb 4 pages) and the advice offered by the Department of Transport Circular 2/92 and Home Office Circular 13/92. A person with a current conviction for serious crime need not be permanently barred from obtaining a licence, but should be expected to remain free of conviction for three to five years, according to the circumstances, before an application is entertained. Some discretion may be appropriate if the offence is isolated and there are mitigating circumstances. However, the consideration should be the protection of the public.
Applicants are reminded that, to operate a private hire vehicle, they must first be licensed as a Private Hire Operator. Before submitting such an application, they must contact the Planning Department with regard to the change of use of the property.
Please note that Eden District Council is under a duty to protect the public funds it administers and, to this end, may use the information provided in making a licence application for the purposes of preventing and detecting fraud. For the same purposes, it may also share the information with other public bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds. For further information, see the National Fraud Initiative page on our website or contact a member of the licensing team.
Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles
According to our records, a number of licensed vehicles are wheelchair accessible - see list for full details. If you notice any apparent error or omission in the list, please contact a member of the Licensing Team.
Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles (PDF: 12Kb / 1 page)
The Council is required by law to maintain a register containing details of various licences issued. This register can be viewed online or can be viewed at the Town Hall, Penrith during normal office hours. If you notice any apparent error or omission in the register, or if you have any query about it, please contact a member of the Licensing Team.
For further information
Contact: Licensing Team, Town Hall, Penrith, CA11 7QF
Monday to Thursday 8.45am to 5.15pm
Friday 8.45am to 4.45pm
Telephone: 01768 212148 or 01768 212273
Fax: 01768 890470