Agenda item

Consideration of Fit and Proper - 22/00218/TAXI


Members of the Licensing Sub-Committee have had to consider whether an applicant was a fit and proper person to hold a combined Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Drivers licence issued by Bath and North East Somerset Council to drive in the Bath and North East Somerset area, subject to the conditions attached to the license and a satisfactory DBS check and DVLA check as appropriate.


In doing so they took account of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 s 51(1) licensing of drivers of private hire vehicles, s 59 qualifications for drivers of Hackney Carriages, s 61 suspension and revocation of drivers’ licenses, and Human Rights Act 1998, case law and the Council’s Policy.

Members reminded themselves that each case is taken on its merit, any economic impact of the decision is irrelevant and with public protection being of paramount importance the whole of a person’s character is relevant.

Members had to:

  • Consider the evidence presented by the licensing officers and the applicant.
  • Had to determine the issue of whether the applicant was a fit and proper person the hold a private hire / hackney carriage license
  • Had to take any suitable action including consideration of attaching to the grant of a licence under section 51 Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 s 51(1) such extra conditions as they consider reasonably necessary; a suspension or a decision not to renew the license under s 61.


Licensing Officers Report

The applicant has held a licence since 19 April 2012.  The last licence expired on 28 February 2022 and is due for renewal.  The applicant submitted an application for renewal on 24 January 2022.


This hearing and consideration was triggered by information obtained on the consideration of the applicant’s application for renewal of his Private Hire / Hackney Carriage License. 

The Licensing Officer gave his report.

The applicant has had two previous warnings for non-compliance with the requirements of his Hackney Carriage / Private Hire Licence. 

  • 5 June 2014 for failing to inform the Council of his change of address, although he advised the DVLA and insurers
  • 16 March 2016 for failing to disclose a conviction for speeding on a motorway


The conditions attached to the grant of a combined Hackney Carriage/Private Hire Drivers licence state Should the Licence holder receive any conviction, caution or Fixed Penalty Notice for a motoring offence during the period of the Licence he/she shall within 7 days give the Council written notice of the conviction, formal caution or Fixed Penalty Notice together with providing information relating to the circumstances surrounding the offence.


On the application to renew his licence on 24 January 2022, in answer to the question, the applicant answered ‘yes’, speeding on a motorway.


In answer to the question have you provided details of the conviction to the Council in accordance with the requirement in your license, the applicant stated ‘No’.


The applicant apologised for his failing and gave an explanation for his failure:


I remember the time when I received the penalty, but the office was closed by the time I received the penalty letter from the DVLA, the reason why I failed to tell the Licensing about the penalty it’s because I applied to made the speeding course but it turned that I was not allowed to, I did not know the reason why, probably because the Coronavirus lockdown that came in place shortly after. I am sorry, I know I should’ve been telling you, honestly I probably forgot to. Please reconsider about any penalty as I promise you I will be careful and I will tell you about any changes in the future.


No complaints have been received from members of the public during the term the applicant has been licensed by Bath & North East Somerset Council.


Applicant’s Representations

The applicant apologised for failing to notify the Council of his convictions within 7 days. 


The applicant told Members I am guilty.  I am the only person in my house providing money.  I accept I am guilty, sorry.  For the last offence I totally forgot, I have young children, it is very busy, as I am a new father, it is difficult to adapt and I forgot.  I can only give my word that I will do my best in future, you can trust me.


Bath and North East Somerset Council Licensing Sub-Committee decision:

Having heard from the licensing officers and the applicant and taking into consideration:

·  that the applicant has had two speeding convictions on a motorway.

·  that the applicant has twice failed to follow the requirements of the license to report a motoring conviction

·  That the applicant has had two previous warnings for failing to comply with the requirements of his Hackney Carriage / Private Hire License


The license is renewed but suspended until 1 April 2022.  The applicant is advised that any further breach of license conditions could have a different outcome.

Supporting documents: