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High Court dismisses taxi livery challenge

A High Court ruling has dismissed a local taxi driver's appeal against the Council's taxi livery policy.

The driver had claimed in a previous hearing in November 2016 at Guildford Crown that the livery policy amounted to a licence condition and should be removed from his licence. The Judge dismissed that appeal, finding that the reasons for the livery, such as protecting public safety, are sound and reasonable. 

The taxi driver then took his appeal to the High Court.

The High Court ruling dismissed the appeal, deciding that it is reasonable to attach conditions on licences which relate to Council policy. The Court awarded the Council an additional £2,000 in costs. The appellant now owes the Council £11,000 in costs for this and other appeal cases.

​Cllr Graham Ellwood, Lead Councillor for Licensing and Community Safety says: "I'm delighted with the ruling made by the High Court. My hope now is that this judgement brings to an end the legal challenges that have diverted the Council from other important work to help taxi drivers. This has caused delays in implementing a policy that is aimed at raising standards and protecting the travelling public."

The policy change was previously challenged at Redhill Magistrates Court in July 2016 and at Guildford Crown Court in November 2016. At each stage costs have been awarded to Guildford Borough Council.

​​​Cllr Ellwood added: "Guildford will now have a fleet of easily identifiable, liveried taxis from 1 January 2018. I would like to remind drivers that they need to make arrangements to livery their taxis as soon as possible to ensure they are not off the road after this deadline."

Published on Tuesday 10 October.