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Private Hire and Taxi Vehicle Licensing Fees

Fees from 1 April 2018


Licence Fee (12 months or less)


Private Hire                                                                                      


Hackney Carriage



Retest Fee


Private Hire 


Hackney Carriage


Horse Drawn Hackney Carriage 



Replacement Plate


Replacement Pass Certificate



Cancellation of Appointment


24 hours notice given


Less than 24 hours notice given



Change of Name/Licence Details


Transfer of Proprietorship of Licensed Vehicle



Click here to download Vehicle Guidance Notes and Application form

Click here to download Private Hire Vehicle Conditions

Click here to download Taxi Vehicle Conditions


The Council normally requires all private hire vehicles to display a prescribed roof sign, prescribed door signs and a Licence Plate fitted to the rear exterior of the vehicle. The Council will consider exemption requests from these requirements and the following framework sets out the Council's approach to such requests.

Click here to down load the Framework for Consideration of Vehicle Exemption Requests.


To view a public register of Taxi and Private Hire vehicle Licensees, please visit http://www.licensing.bedford.gov.uk/. This on-line register may not include all items that are available to the public for inspection and, therefore, further enquiries may be necessary of the Authority.


If you would like to make an on-line payment, please use the link in the listing on the left hand side of this page.


The full Privacy Statement for Private Hire and Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licences can be viewed here

Licence Summary


A private hire or hackney carriage vehicle licence is required for any motor vehicle constructed or adapted to seat fewer than nine passengers, which is provided for hire with the services of a driver for the purpose of carrying passengers.  The exemptions to this are public carriage vehicles, wedding cars and funeral cars.

Private Hire Vehicles must be pre-booked by customers with the vehicle’s licensed operator.  Hackney Carriages may be hailed in the street or receive bookings at designated Hackney Carriage Ranks.

Eligibility Criteria


To be licensed as either a Private Hire or a hackney Carriage vehicle, it must be suitable in type, size and design for such a use, suitable in mechanical condition, safe and comfortable.  A Private Hire Vehicle must not be of such design and appearance as to lead any person to believe that the vehicle is a hackney carriage.  For either type of vehicle, there must be a valid policy of insurance that meets the requirements of Part VI of the Road Traffic Act 1988.

For Hackney Carriages, the Authority may refuse a licence if it is convinced that there is no significant demand for Hackney carriages which is unmet. Following a Hackney Carriage Unmet Demand Study concluded in January 2014, this policy will continue for a minimum of a further 4 years from the conclusion of the study.

Regulation Summary

A summary of the regulation relating to this licence

Town Police Clauses Act 1847

Application Evaluation Process


The applicant will complete an application and submit this to the Authority with the required fee. Details of the V5 Registration Certificate and Insurance presented will also be examined to see that they are genuine.  The applicant will then need to make arrangements for the vehicle to be inspected at the Authority’s testing depot to the standard set by the Authority.  The Authority also has a policy whereby vehicles that have reached nine years since they were first registered will not normally be granted a licence.

Hackney Carriages are normally white in colour and so Private Hire Vehicles should not normally be white. 

For seating capacity, the Authority does not normally permit seating that does not have immediate access to an external door which they can open from the inside of the vehicle (middle seats in a row of three seats would normally be permissible).  This policy generally impacts on the seating permitted within MPVs.

In respect of glass in a licensed vehicle, the Authority’s policy states that the glass should normally permit more than 45% of visual light to be transmitted through it.  For windscreen and front driver and passenger side windows the normal statutory limits apply.

Metrocabs and London style cabs such as FX4 and TX10 models are not normally permitted to be licensed as Private Hire Vehicles.

Will Tacit Consent Apply?


No. It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from the local authority within a reasonable period, please contact it. You can do this online if you applied through the UK Welcomes service or use the contact details below.  The target completion period for processing these applications is 30 working days.

Apply online (You will need Version 9 (or higher) of Adobe Reader)


This facility will be available shortly

You can download application forms using the links on this page.  Once signed, you can also return them electronically.  On-line payment of the required fee is available using the links on the left hand side of this web page.

Failed Application Redress

Please contact the Local Authority in the first instance.

Any applicant who is refused a licence can appeal to their local Magistrates' court

Licence Holder Redress


Please contact the Local Authority in the first instance. Any Licence Holder who is aggrieved by a condition attached to their Licence can appeal to their local Magistrates' court

Consumer Complaint


We would always advise that in the event of a complaint you should contact the Licensing Authority or if you are located in the UK, Consumer Direct will give you advice. From outside the UK contact the UK European Consumer Centre

Other Redress


Trade Associations

Private Hire & Taxi Monthly

National Taxi Association