Taxi Licensing in Buckinghamshire - Public Survey

Closed 27 Sep 2020

Opened 7 Sep 2020

Results Updated 9 Nov 2020

We received 583 responses to this public survey.

  • 58% of respondents were residents 
  • 27% of respondents were taxi drivers
  • 7% of respondents were taxi companies licenced by Buckinghamshire Council

The main findings were:

Taxi vehicles

  • Vehicle safety and roadworthiness was the most important factor (98%)
  • Other important points were vehicles being clean and tidy (94%), vehicle exterior being in good condition (91%) and vehicles being clearly identifiable as a taxi (86%)

Taxi drivers

  • Greatest importance was placed on drivers being able to read and speak English (92%)
  • Almost as important was driver drug and alcohol testing (89%)
  • Only slightly less important were safeguarding training (84%), disability awareness training (81%), more frequent medical checks (81%) and finally drivers knowing the local area without the need for a sat nav (76%)

Taxi ranks

  • There was broadly a 50/50 split between respondents who do use taxi ranks, and respondents who don’t use taxi ranks
  • A notable exception to this were respondents from the South Bucks area where the majority (84%) said they did not use taxi ranks, which is explained by the fact that there are very few ranks in South Bucks
  • Suggestions on where to site new taxi ranks included train stations, outside major retail units, night-time economy hubs and in key towns
  • Respondents also suggested improvement to current ranks such as extending ranks to fit more cabs, making ranks for easily identifiable particularly for the blind/partially sighted, providing CCTV for safety and other disputes

Taxi operating zones

  • This subject provided the least clear view from respondents
  • Many (37%) weren’t sure whether we should keep four separate zones
  • Almost the same number of respondents wanted to keep separate zones (36%)
  • Slightly fewer wanted us to create a single, countywide zone (28%)
  • Taxi drivers licenced by us were in favour of keeping separate zones (46%), whilst residents weren’t sure (41%) and taxi companies favoured unifying them into a single, countywide zone (38%)
  • Reasons given from those in favour of keeping separate zones included:
    • With a single operating zone, taxis will focus on the most profitable areas only and therefore under-serve less profitable areas, leading to an inconsistent service across the county
    • It will be too complex to manage a county-wide zone
    • It’s better for the environment if taxis are working and travelling only within a localised zone
  • Reasons given from those in favour of creating one countywide zone included:
    • It will provide greater fare efficiencies
    • It will generate savings e.g. training costs, maintenance and so on
    • It will increase flexibility and allow supply to better meet demand
    • Different rules in different zones makes it complicated for the public

Overview

The Council is responsible for licensing the drivers and operators of private hire vehicles (minicabs) and the drivers of hackney carriage vehicles (taxis) within Buckinghamshire, excluding Milton Keynes.

The main purpose of licensing is to ensure that the travelling public is provided with a safe and accessible means of transport. 

We are developing a new taxi licensing policy to promote the highest possible standards to secure public safety. This supports our corporate priorities of protecting the vulnerable and improving the environment. 

We welcome your views to help shape future policy decisions in this important area. Please take a few minutes to complete the short online survey below. 

The results of this survey will be used to help us prepare a new Draft Taxi Licensing Policy for the Council.  The draft policy will be published later this year, when there will be a further opportunity to comment on it. We will adopt a final Taxi Licensing Policy in early 2021.

What Happens Next

The results of this survey will be used to help us prepare a new Draft Taxi Licensing Policy for the Council.

The draft policy will be published later this year, when there will be a further opportunity to comment on it.

We will adopt a final Taxi Licensing Policy in early 2021

Interests

  • Transport
  • Business
  • Communities