PHV PLY OR NOT ??
By Tony Mc
Mr John Mason the director of taxi and private hire launched Transport for London’s one strike and your out policy for private hire operator’s and drivers.
In it he states that Private Hire Drivers must not park or wait illegally outside venues.
Well are they plying for hire or not. Why won’t the Public Carriage Office (PCO) use these words?
We have always stated that they are plying for hire because we have the law and the best courts in the land to say so. A case in 1946 Gilbert V McKay.
Mr McKay had an office in Rupert st W1 , parked outside this office in the street were several cars belonging to him. Several people were seen to enter the office for the purpose of paying for the hire of any one of the cars, which they were observed to be driven away in. McKay was charged with being the owner of unlicensed hackney carriages and was convicted and fined by the Magistrates court.
He lodged an appeal, the appeal was dismissed. The Lord Chief Justices Lord Goddard had the following to say.
“In my opinion even if the cars had been standing in a private yard and could not been seen by the public, they could still have been plying for hire if they had been appropriated for immediate hiring”.
So where does this leave Mr Howard, who sent out emails to everyone saying that cars parked outside these satellite office venues were not plying for hire and could legally park there as long has they had tax and insurance, and were just parked.
A man so high up in the PCO telling us we are wrong, as if it was a battle between us and him just so long as he won! We don’t want to fight with the PCO who are the licensing authority not policy makers, we just want decisions made on what’s right and what’s wrong by Law.
How can the PCO have a person in place who views the licenced taxi trade as his enemy and in my view he’s trying to destroy us. Mr Mason also stated in the exclusive in the badge that satellite offices do form a key part of the Safer Travel at Night Initiative and, operated correctly, they offer customers freedom of choices between a licensed, pre booked private hire vehicle or a licensed London taxi.
Sorry Mr mason this not the case it will only be the case if the licensed taxi trade had a rank outside every venue in London that has a satellite facility inside, until this happens there is no freedom of choice for the public. just freedom for the private hire.