Private hire driver's licence

Information on applying to be a private hire driver

Anyone who drives a licensed private hire vehicle must hold a licence to do so from the borough council, in every circumstance. This is because the vehicle remains licensed whether or not it is hired or available for hire.

Private hire vehicles may only be pre-booked, and may not be hailed in the street or stand and ply for hire. Their fares are not regulated by the borough council, and must be the subject of agreement between passenger and driver before a journey commences.

A private hire driver's licence is granted for a period of 3 years.

Apply for a private hire driver's licence

The council’s policy requires that all applicants:

  • be aged over 21 years old
  • have held a full licence for at least two years - for manual drive vehicles
  • have passed a driving skills assessment to the council’s satisfaction
  • Be able to prove that you have a right to live and work in the UK.
  • pass the council’s test of their knowledge of the topography of the borough and the responsibilities of a licensed driver
  • provide a medical report certifying that they are fit to a Group 2 standard in accordance with the current DVLA medical standards of fitness to drive
  • consent to an enhanced criminal record disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service
  • consent to a driving history check from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency.

Please note that if you do not actively pursue your application for six months or more, we will treat it as having been withdrawn. You will need to start again if you later wish to become a licensed driver.

It is also the policy of the borough council that all licensed drivers obtain a BTech qualification in transporting passengers by taxi and private hire vehicle within 3 years of the grant of their licence.

Exceptionally, in the case of applicants for a restricted licence to drive specialist private hire vehicles, it may not be necessary for the applicant to complete the knowledge test.

Criminal Records

The licensing team has a responsibility to ensure that licensed drivers are fit and proper persons to hold such licences, given the circumstances of their employment. In order to assist in making such decisions, a check is made with the Disclosure and Barring Service before a licence application is determined, and thereafter on a three-yearly basis. Applicants will normally be expected to subscribe to the DBS update service and remain subscribed whilst they remain licensed.

The latest information on the criminal record check process can be obtained from the Disclosure and Barring Service; their guidance on dealing with disclosure forms and the applicant’s guide will be of particular interest.

Apply for a private hire driver's licence

A completed application form and supporting documents must be submitted by the applicant in person at the licensing office at Hedge End Depot, when the forms for disclosure of any criminal record (fee payable is £44) and a check of your driving history with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (fee paybable is £5) will be completed. In order to undertake this part of the process you must be able to conclusively prove your identity to our satisfaction.

To submit your application telephone 023 8068 8109 to book an appointment with a member of the licensing team.

 

You will need to bring the following items with you to the appointment:

  • A full current driving licence that has been valid for two years prior to the date of application.  If new style, plastic card.
  • Proof of identification: Passport, Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate,
  • National Insurance number proof, card or correspondence
  • Utility Bill showing current address (no more than 3 months old)

At your appointment you will be booked on to the next available knowledge test. The fee payable prior to each test taken is £15 

A medical form completed by a general practitioner is required for all new applications and every 5 years thereafter).  On attaining 65 years of age a medical certificate will be required every year. It is suggested this is supplied towards the end of the application process.

Before arranging for this medical report to be completed please read the notes at section C, paragraphs 1,2,3,4 and 5 (Group 2 Medical Standards) of the medical screening notes contained within the douments at the bottom of this page. If you have any of these conditions you may not be granted a licence. 

If, after reading the notes, you have any doubts about your ability to meet the medical standards of Group 2 as set out on DVLA web site (see note B2 below for website), consult your Doctor and/or Optician before you arrange for this medical report to be completed.  In the event of your application being refused, the fee you pay your Doctor is not refundable, Eastleigh Borough Council has no responsibility for the fee payable to your Doctor. 

In future, if you develop symptoms of a condition that could affect safe driving, you must inform the Council’s Licensing Team immediately.

It will take in the region of six to eight weeks to obtain a licence depending mainly on the response time for vetting by the Disclosure and Barring Service 

You can hold both hackney carriage and private hire driver's licences at the same time but the full fee is payable for both licenses. 

Criminal or driving convictions will affect an application, however, guidelines apply and each case is dealt with on its merits (see Guidance notes and conditions below). 

Licence fee £182 (cash, card or cheque payable to Eastleigh Borough Council)


Eastleigh Borough Council Licensing Team