Information about drivers

You need a licence to drive a taxi (sometimes called a hackney carriage) or a private hire vehicle.

The licence is valid for 3 years from the date of issue. Once issued you will be provided with a badge which must be on show at all times. It shows you are licensed and is a matter of public safety and reassurance for the passenger.

Details of the process to obtain a licence can be found below.

Applying for a licence

To apply for a hackney carriage and private hire licence, you must be able to provide the following documentation:

  • a DBS check
  • a HBC approved medical report
  • a full driving licence (held for at least 12 months)
  • date of knowledge test
  • 2 passport sized photos
  • a completed Intelligent Data Systems mandate
  • a completed application form (which requests the names and addresses of 2 references)

Any applicant unable to provide a full 5 year address history in the UK must provide a Certificate of Good Conduct from their Embassy or Home Country Police and a Home Country Traffic Police Record, with English translation where necessary, to complete a total 5 year history.

We require evidence of right to work in the form of:

  • UK/EU passport (current or expired)
  • EU ID card
  • Non EU passport with appropriate visa or full UK birth certificate with official document containing National Insurance number.

Havant Borough Council is required to ensure that licence holders are 'fit and proper' to hold licences. Part of that procedure is an initial and then periodic checks for any criminal record held or acquired over the time you are licensed.  The only organisation permitted to do this is the DBS who set their own fee.

The council has no control over this matter.

Completing an IDS mandate

Under Health and Safety and Duty of Care requirements, local authorities are obliged to check that all hackney carriage and private hire drivers are correctly licensed to drive. Havant Borough Council have outsourced the process to Intelligent Data Systems in order to minimise the opportunity for data fraud. 

Intelligent Data Systems will request your current endorsement and licence category information from the DVLA.

About the written knowledge test

The public have a right to expect that, when they get into either a taxi or private hire vehicle, the driver will know how to get to the destination. After all, they are paying for that level of service.

All applicants will have to pass the knowledge test in order to obtain a taxi or private hire vehicle licence no matter what type of work you are intending to undertake.

The in-car driving assessment

As a professional driver, you will have a special responsibility to ensure that your passengers have a safe, comfortable and enjoyable journey. Therefore we ask initial driver applicants to sit an in-car driving assessment conducted by the Blue Lamp Trust. 

Please contact The Blue Lamp Trust for further details about the in-car taxi assessment on 0333 700 0157. All assessment bookings can be made via their website.

The licensing department will need to be informed of the test date.