Not all cabbies are rogues

PUBLISHED: 10:24 18 June 2008 | UPDATED: 22:10 26 October 2009

Taxi rank

Taxi rank

Sir - I hope my letter goes someway to explaining what every hard working, decent and honest taxi driver (yes, there are quite a lot of us still to be found) is feeling at the present moment. After reading the report (WHT, June 4) by Kelly-Ann Kiernan

Sir - I hope my letter goes someway to explaining what every hard working, decent and honest taxi driver (yes, there are quite a lot of us still to be found) is feeling at the present moment.

After reading the report (WHT, June 4) by Kelly-Ann Kiernan about more Hackney and private hire drivers having criminal records, I felt compelled to write on behalf of all decent drivers. If the convictions would be considered spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, when why bring them up in the first place (everyone deserves a second chance)?

However, there are certain crimes that are mentioned, that in our opinion, if a driver has committed any of these offences, then he or she should never be considered for a licence as a taxi driver. I am sure I don't need to explain what these crimes are (this is where common sense kicks in).

It's our belief that these drivers should have their licences revoked immediately - no matter how long ago the offence or offences were committed (this is where the Hackney carriage office start earning their money).

Every day we are told by different customers that they have been in taxis on numerous occasions and drivers have not known where they are going and/or over-charging customers or the drivers conveniently have no change. (Always ask for a receipt and remember if the fare seems excessive for the journey, give the driver what you normally pay).

In some extreme cases the drivers have been sexually suggestive towards their female customers. We listen to this on a daily basis and it is becoming more and more common.

Well then, this is where we say to the fare paying public, you know who you are, and more importantly, you know who the drivers are - so we urge you the public, to complain to the Hackney carriage office and/or police, giving the driver's badge number (found inside the vehicle) and vehicle licence number (found on the rear of the vehicle directly under the registration/number plate) and details of the journey, as they are the only bodies that can sort out these problems (contact Hackney carriage officer James Vaughan on 01707 357982).

I'd like to finish of by saying thanks to Kelly-Ann Kiernan from all the drivers for getting us all tarred with the same brush and helping boost the trade in this very challenging, economic climate (fuel prices etc, etc), thanks to the WHT, and thanks to the fare-paying public for your custom over the years and good riddance to all you undesirable drivers, we don't want you ruining our trade.

We also believe its about time the Hackney carriage office/panels/ councillors started to work with the decent drivers of the trade (who also have the public safety as paramount), because if it wasn't for the public we wouldn't earn a living. There are no doubts among the decent drivers and fare paying public that standards have dropped.

Name and address supplied

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