Hackney Carriage Vehicles

Greater Manchester Minimum Licensing Standards →

Please ensure you are aware of how the new standards may affect you before submitting your application. Failure to do so could result in your application being rejected.

Please ensure you are aware of how the new standards may affect you before submitting your application. Failure to do so could result in your application being rejected.

Under the provisions of the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 and the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 we are responsible for licensing hackney carriage vehicles that work within the Borough.

It is very important for safety reasons that members of the public do not get into any vehicle that they think is a hackney carriage unless it has the appropriate signs/plate, and the driver is wearing the correct driver's badge.

There are currently a limit of 136 hackney carriage vehicle licences in the Borough.

Greater Manchester Minimum Licensing Standards

Stage 2 of these standards relating to taxis and private hire vehicles will come into effect on 13 December 2021 unless stated otherwise. Further information can be found on  Regulation Committee Report.

On 10 February 2022, in response to the current Clean Air Zone position a number of amendments were approved.  Further information can be found in the Officer Decision.

Making an Application

Prior to making an application please ensure that you have read through any guidance notes.  Failure to do so could lead to a delay with your application.

You are also advised to read through and familiarise yourself with the conditions which will be attached to your licence should it be issued.

Please note:

  • All vehicles must conform to the M1 standard (any modified vehicle at M2 standard must have an appropriate test certificate to ensure conformity with single vehicle type approval)
  • We do not permit retrofitting of engines into older vehicles.  LPG conversions will be accepted
  • Where retrofit emissions technology is installed, it shall be approved as part of the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme (CVRAS)
  • Specification for window tints will be:
    • Front windscreen – min. 75% light transmission
    • Front side door glass – min. 70% light transmission
    • Remaining glass or rear side windows (exc. Rear window) - allow manufacturer’s tint to a minimum 20% light transmission
  • No advertising other than Council approved signage is permitted
  • For the purposes of calculating the passenger capacity of a vehicle each single seat shall be counted as one passenger and for bench seats, a distance of 40 cm measured across the front of the seat and a distance of 35.5 cm deep shall be the minimum requirement for each passenger
  • There shall be available a space consisting of a flat area of floor 30cm square measured at right angles to a line from the vertical plane of the front of any passenger seat and that area shall not include any bulkhead or any other intrusion
  • It is strongly recommended that the design of the vehicle shall be such that there is path available to all passengers seated adjacent to the driver's seat from their seat to not less than two doors
  • The design of the vehicle shall be such that there shall be no side facing seats in the vehicle
  • The vehicle shall be right hand drive
  • Any proprietor that is not currently a licensed private hire or hackney carriage driver will be required to provide evidence of a Basic Disclosure (external link), at least once in a 12 month period.

Application Timescales

We aim to acknowledge receipt of your application, including providing a vehicle inspection appointment (where applicable) within 5 working days (subject to receipt of a complete application). Failure to submit a completed application, including supporting documents and the appropriate fee will delay the processing times.

You will be emailed a time and date for your vehicle to be inspected.

We then aim to determine your application within 2 workings days of a satisfactory vehicle inspection result.

Renewal Applications

Licence holders can continue to renew their existing vehicle licence in accordance with the agreed Minimum Licensing Standards transitional arrangements.

N.B. In line with the new Direction issued by Government in respect of the Greater Manchester Clean Air Zone the transitional period has been extended from 1 April 2024 to 1 April 2026.

In relation to written off vehicles (category N and S), we will now permit one further renewal of existing licensed vehicles (the previous cut-off date was 1 April 2022). 

Renewal applications can be made up to 8 weeks prior to the expiry date.  You are currently advised to submit an application no later than 3 weeks prior to the expiry date.

The process for making an application is as follows:

If you are not currently a licensed private hire or hackney carriage driver you will be required to provide evidence of a Basic Disclosure at the time of application.

Vehicle Change Applications

As of 10 February 2022 if you need to replace an existing licensed vehicle before a further decision in relation to the Clean Air Zone funding has been made, then we will permit an application outside of the current minimum licensing standards in relation to age and emissions.  However the vehicle will still be required to be:

  • Wheelchair adapted; and
  • Black in colour (unless the vehicle is purpose built in which case it can be the manufacturers colour).

A purpose-built Hackney Carriage is a vehicle that has been manufactured and sold by the relevant Manufacturer as a Hackney Carriage.  A vehicle that has been manufactured and registered, but subsequently converted is not considered to be purpose built.  Whilst vehicles converted by an approved company post manufacturing process may be permitted onto the fleet, it does not meet the definition of purpose built.

No vehicles that have been written off in any category will be permitted.  A HPi check may be carried out to verify this information.

This replacement vehicle would only be permitted on fleet until the agreed transitional period (as stated above) or until the vehicle reaches the maximum age permitted, as per the Minimum Licensing Standards Policy (whichever is applicable). 

When the funding is made available, we will revert back to the original policy which was agreed on 3 December 2021 by the Regulation Committee.

The process for making an application is as follows:

If you are not currently a licensed private hire or hackney carriage driver you will be required to provide evidence of a Basic Disclosure at the time of application.

Transfer Applications

The process for making an application to change the vehicle licence holder(s) is as follows:

    • Consent Form (to completed by each of the existing proprietors) (mandatory)
    • Vehicle Log Book (V5c) (mandatory)
    • Bill of Sale (mandatory)
    • Vehicle Insurance (mandatory, however this can follow)
    • Basic Disclosure (external link) (if applicable).

If you are not currently a licensed private hire or hackney carriage driver you will be required to provide evidence of a Basic Disclosure at the time of application.

Vehicle Inspections

Before a licence can be issued, vehicles must be tested to make sure that they are mechanically fit, safe and comfortable. 

You cannot currently book your own vehicle inspection.

Your vehicle must be disinfected before it's presented for inspection at the council’s Makerfield Way Depot.

If your vehicle fails a vehicle inspection or is booked as a non-arrival a further fee will be payable. 

Cancel or Change a Vehicle Inspection

To cancel or change an appointment that has already been booked please email the Licensing Team at your earliest convenience.  All appointments must be cancelled or changed a minimum of 24 hours in advance, not including weekends and bank holidays. Failure to do so could incur additional costs.

Check a Vehicle Inspection Appointment

You can check and confirm the date and time of any future inspection that has already been booked. You will need your full vehicle registration to confirm this information and details can be found at:

Paying for a Vehicle Inspection ( fees and charges)

Licence Conditions / Byelaws

The conditions attached to all hackney carriage vehicle licences have been updated in connection with the Greater Manchester Minimum Licensing Standards. These conditions came into effect on 13 December 2021.

Report a Vehicle Accident

As the proprietor of a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle licensed by Wigan Council, you must report any accident causing damage materially affecting the safety, performance or appearance of the vehicle or the comfort or convenience of persons carried in the vehicle.

All accidents should be reported within 72 hours of the accident, in accordance with the provisions of the Road Traffic Act 1988.

Fare Table

Hackney Carriage Ranks

Hackney Carriage Unmet Demand Survey

In 2016, the council commissioned an independent survey to assess whether any significant unmet demand for hackney carriage services exists within the Borough. Following the survey, it was concluded that there was no significant unmet demand for hackney carriage services.

View the hackney carriage demand survey report (external link).

A further unmet demand survey is currently being carried out.

Complaints

If you wish to make a complaint in relation to a hackney carriage vehicle, please contact the Licensing Team. Please provide details of the vehicle including vehicle registration or plate number.

COVID-19 Guidance

Protective Screens

Any addition of a ‘screen’ to this vehicle would not form part of the standard requirements and conditions, and therefore will not be examined as part of the inspection.

Wigan Council would not accept liability in circumstances where a screen has caused injury to a passenger or the driver, as we do not recommend or approve the addition of a screen in licensed vehicles.

Further guidance can be found at Safety Screens for Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (external link).

Keeping your vehicle clean to prevent the spread of COVID-19

We advise all drivers / vehicle proprietors to follow the  NHS guidance (external link) to prevent the spread of the virus.

We are also advising that you follow these simple steps:

  • Think about asking passengers about any symptoms before the ‘pick up’
  • Where possible, ask all passengers to sit in the back of your vehicle
  • Disinfect the vehicle after every hiring (where possible).

Where the above is not possible, you should regularly clean / disinfect surfaces after every journey or at the beginning, middle and end of a shift, as a minimum. This includes:

© Wigan Council