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Taxi and private hire vehicle licence

Please note, that we are experiencing high volumes of new driver, new vehicle and new operator applications. This has created a significant lead-in time to obtain an available compliance test slot required for Hackney Carriage and / or Private Hire Vehicle applications. The Council is currently considering potential solutions to ease this lead-in time.

There are two types of annual vehicle licence in Ashfield - for Hackney carriages (taxis) and for private hire vehicles. You must have the right licence for your vehicle before you use it for this type of work. 

As well as a vehicle licence you need to be licensed as a driver (by the same council the vehicle is licensed by) and if you work for a private hire company they must have an operator licence

We regularly carry out check to make sure licensed vehicles are safe, and meet high standards visually and mechanically. 

How to licence a vehicle for the first time

Vehicles being licensed for the first time should ideally be under 5 years of age (from date of first registration as stated on the V5 Log Book), but we will licence vehicles that are more than 5 years of age for new vehicle licences subject to certain additional criteria detailed on this web page and in the Vehicle Application Pack, in the related documents section of this web page.

Please note, we will not licence any car that is 12 years of age or more. We will not licence vehicles which have been marked as an insurance write off – and an HPI report is required for all new vehicle applications, to prove this. 

Applications for new Hackney Carriage vehicle licences must only be for wheelchair accessible vehicles. This means such vehicles must be able to carry the passenger whilst they are seated in a wheelchair. 

Full details as to the criteria applicable to all vehicles, and the full procedure to be followed to licence a vehicle for the first time (including the necessary application form and the list of all required supporting documents to be sent with any vehicle application) can be found in the Vehicle Application Pack. Please ensure that you follow the procedure exactly as it is written in the Vehicle Application Pack.

It is your responsibility to ensure that any vehicle you buy will meet our standards and criteria. Officers cannot tell you if a car will be suitable or not, so you should refer to the Vehicle Application Pack to check if the car you want to buy will be suitable to be licensed by us. You will find our public registers in the related documents on this page, which list all of the vehicles currently licensed as either Hackney Carriages, or as Private Hire Vehicles; this will give you a good idea of the makes and models of cars already deemed suitable to be licensed.

Once you have your car, you then need to contact our Motor Transport Depot to book it in for a compliance test:

  • telephone: 01623 457411

You will need to pay for the test fee and licence fee when you book the compliance test.

As soon as you have secured your compliance test time and date, call the Licensing Team to pre-book a Virtual Appointment for you to submit your complete Vehicle Application:

  • telephone: 01623 457589

The date the Licensing Team will give you will be for shortly after the date of the compliance test (you can only submit the application after the compliance test has been passed, as the compliance test pass sheet forms part of the supporting documents for the vehicle licence application).

If the car passes the compliance test, and your submit all the necessary documents to the Licensing Team at your virtual appointment, then the new plate and licence will be posted to you.

Vehicles over 5 years old

To licence a vehicle that is 5 years old or over (based on its date of first registration to the date you submit a full and valid application for a vehicle licence/plate), you will need to show:

  • for Hackney carriages - it is a fully wheelchair accessible vehicle.
  • for Private hire - it must be either a fully wheelchair accessible vehicle, or be a low emission vehicle (this means that if its date of first registration is older than 01/04/2017, it must not have CO2 emissions higher than 120; and if its date of first registration is 01/04/2017 or later, then it must not have CO2 emissions higher than 75. You can find the date of first registration and the CO2 emissions information on the V5 log book).
  • For Executive Chauffeur Private Hire – it must be of luxurious / prestigious make and model,  but does not have to be a fully wheelchair accessible vehicle or a low emission vehicle, but when you eventually replace that car, you will need to replace it with either a fully wheelchair accessible vehicle or a low emission vehicle.
  • the vehicle application is supported by an independent Auto-Engineer report stating it is in “exceptional condition” – you can obtain this from our Motor Transport Depot when you make your booking for the car to have its Certificate of Compliance Test.

Apart from these details the process is the same as for a newer vehicle. Forms can be downloaded from this page and submitted to us with copies of any supporting documentation by email. 

Transfer ownership of a licensed vehicle 

If you sell a licensed vehicle you must let us know, including details of the new owner. If you buy a licensed vehicle you must also let us know. You need to do this within 14 days of buying the vehicle

You will need to complete and send a transfer of ownership form to us. There is no charge for this but you will need to book a virtual appointment so we can process the form. 

Renewing a vehicle licence

We will send you a reminder 4 months before your vehicle renewal is due. Details of how to renew are in the application pack which can be downloaded from this page. 

How much does it cost?

There are a number of costs involved in licensing a vehicle for use as a taxi or for private hire. You can pay these fees online using a debit or credit card once you've submitted your application to us. 

Type of licence or item Cost (£)
Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence: New, renewal or change of vehicle £320.00
Private Hire Vehicle Licence: New, renewal or change of vehicle £300.00
(Change of proprietor of vehicle)
Discount for low emission vehicle or wheelchair accessible vehicle - £30.00
Certificate of compliance test / Retest
(at Council Motor Transport Depot)
Independent Auto-Engineer Report
(at Council Motor Transport Depot)
Replacement licence plate £29.00
Plate holding bracket
(at Council Motor Transport Depot)
Amendment to licence £15.00
Copy of licence £5.00

Pay for your application

Loss of a licence plate

If you lose the licence plate from your vehicle let us know as soon as possible so we can send a replacement. This costs £29. If you need a plate holder bracket too these cost an extra £10. 

You can pay through our online system using a debit or credit card.

Other ways to contact us about taxi and private hire vehicle licences

If you have a question about licensing or want to make a complaint about a taxi or private hire operator, vehicle or driver, you can contact us by: