We use Cookies to improve your experience. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. View our cookie policy

Apply for a hackney carriage vehicle licence

Hackney carriages (taxis) may be hailed, hired from a taxi rank or pre-booked. Licensed taxi vehicles have a roof sign and a white licence plate on the rear. All taxis must be the distinctive Guildford Borough Council teal colour (Pantone 321) and have approved markings.

Use our icon Hackney Carriage vehicle licence form [222.77KB] to renew your licence, change the vehicle on your licence or to licence a new vehicle. Use our icon transfer a vehicle licence application form [46.92KB] to transfer a licence from one proprietor to another.

Licences for hackney carriages will only be granted to vehicles that meet the icon vehicle specification guidance [337.95KB] .

      Applying for a licence

      To apply for a hackney carriage vehicle licence, you will need:

      • completed icon application form [222.77KB]
      • correct  licence fee, payable by credit or debit card
      • valid certificate of insurance covering the passenger for hire and reward and third party risks
      • vehicle registration document V5 (necessary to prove the details of the vehicle) or new owner tear off slip
      • proof of ownership (Bill of Sale)
      • hire purchase agreement (if your vehicle is on hire purchase)
      • MOT test certificate (required when 12 months old)
      • HPI report (for pre-owned vehicles)
      • European whole vehicle type approval certificate
      • mechanical test certificate passed within the last month. You can book your vehicle in online at Woking Road Depot (see our MOT testing page)
      • certificate showing the meter has been calibrated and sealed.

      Renewing a licence

      To renew your hackney carriage vehicle licence, you will need:

      • completed icon renewal application form [222.77KB]
      • the correct fee, payable by credit or debit card (see Licensing fees page)
      • a certificate of insurance covering the passenger for hire and reward and third party risks, valid for the date the licence is due to commence
      • vehicle registration document V5
      • MOT test certificate (required when 12 months old) valid for the date the licence is due to commence
      • mechanical test certificate, passed within the last month.

      Taxi livery

      On 9 December 2015, we updated our  icon Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Policy [959.83KB] and now all hackney carriages must have the Guildford Borough Council livery. 

      • See the details of the icon taxi livery specification. [223.08KB]
      • We have a  icon list of providers of the livery [16.25KB] and provide specifications for this, but each supplier will set their own charges for the livery. 
      • Providers are not endorsed or recommended by the Council. 
      • Any provider is able to contact us with a request to be included on our list, providing they are able to meet the Council's specification.

      Once the vehicle is licensed as a hackney carriage, it may only be driven by a driver holding a hackney carriage driver's licence issued by the Council, even when the vehicle is off duty. 

      The vehicle must also maintain its appearance as a hackney carriage at all times, including displaying any signage, roof sign and plate.