Newcastle’s black cabs set to undergo a makeover as part of new safety measures

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Newcastle City Council’s fleet of taxis are set for a makeover as part of new measures to keep everyone safe and make them more recognisable to the public.

Taxis operated by the council will be all black but with distinguishable white bonnets as part of the new scheme, which will see almost 600 licensed hackney carriages given a makeover.

The vehicles, which collect passengers from taxi ranks or can be hailed in the street, will also be required to display red Newcastle City Council crests on the front doors and have a taxi sign on the roof that is white at the front and red at the rear.

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Any private hire vehicles, which must be pre-booked, will be required to display the name of the licensed operator on the rear passenger doors and be marked as private only.

Black cabs in Newcastle will be given a makeover as part of new safety measures. Black cabs in Newcastle will be given a makeover as part of new safety measures.
Black cabs in Newcastle will be given a makeover as part of new safety measures. | Other 3rd Party

Cllr Paula Maines, Newcastle City Council Cabinet member for a Resilient City, hopes that the new measures will reassure members of the public that taxis and private hire vehicles in the city are safe to use.

She said: “Everyone who uses a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle in Newcastle should feel safe doing so and that’s exactly what these new measures set out to achieve.

“The new colour scheme for hackney carriages – chosen to reflect those of Newcastle United – and the signage requirements for private hire vehicles will make it easier for people to identify them.

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“This will assure passengers that the vehicle and the driver have passed our stringent vetting processes and they will be collected and transported to their destination safely.

“It will also help protect people from unlicensed taxi drivers who illegally ply for trade, particularly at night when people are out enjoying themselves.

“This builds on the fantastic work we are doing with partners through the Safe Newcastle partnership to keep residents and visitors to our city safe.”

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The new safety measures are set to be rolled out as part of Newcastle City Council’s new Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Licensing Policy, which was developed after a 12-week consultation period.

Following the end of the consultation, the policy is now set to go before the Council’s Cabinet on Monday, June 19.

The local authority will support hackney carriage drivers by making a grant of £100 available so they can get the white vinyl wrap fitted to the bonnet of their vehicle.

In order to be eligible for the payment, the car needs to have been licensed with Newcastle City Council on or before June 19, 2023.

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