The Council revoked the driver's licence in July 2019 for a number of reasons, including having a poor record of vehicle maintenance by failing to ensure it was roadworthy and safe for customers, and driving without an MOT certificate. The Council also received several complaints about the driver's behaviour, including the driver being on a Skype call whilst driving a passenger.
The driver had unsuccessfully appealed to the Magistrates Court in December 2019 and lodged a further appeal to the Crown Court which was dismissed following a hearing on 12 August 2020. The Crown Court awarded the Council £1800 in costs, on top of the £2137 awarded by Magistrates Court.
As the Crown Court has dismissed the driver's appeal, this ends the appeal process and they cannot continue driving a licensed vehicle.
Cllr James Steel, Lead Councillor of Environment says:
"We are pleased with the court's decision to dismiss this appeal, these decisions are not taken lightly. We have a duty to ensure the safety and protection of our residents, visitors and those who work in Guildford and they can be confident that their journeys with our licensed taxis will be safe.
"If you are planning to make the most of mid-week or to enjoy a night out with friends and family on the weekend, take one of our licensed taxis from a rank or book a private hire vehicle through a Guildford licensed operator to help you get home safely. Guildford taxis and private hire vehicles are easy to recognise with their distinctive teal colour vehicle or door sticker, so you can be confident you are taking a properly licensed, safe vehicle. Remember to continue to follow government guidance and wear a face covering when taking a taxi or private hire vehicle and wash your hands regularly.
"All of our taxis are fitted with meters and accept card payments to offer convenience and fair prices to offer the best possible service. If you do have any comments about the standards, then please let us know by using our online complaint form quoting the licence number of the vehicle."
Guildford town centre was awarded Purple Flag status for the sixth time last year for providing evenings and nights out that are safe, vibrant and varied. It remains the only town in the county, and one of around 70 in the UK, to hold the award. The taxi trade helps contribute to a safe night out in Guildford.