FOI request detail

Taxi driver’s licence

Request ID: FOI-1917-1920
Date published: 23 October 2019

You asked

Follow on from FOI-1465-1920 Thanks for your e mail. Given that we are now at the end of September, can you kindly provide the figures for this year, as you have supplied for the no of private hire drivers who submitted evidence of a relevant vocational qualification in passenger transport and were subsequently licenced ? Currently you have supplied to end of July please can you supply to a later date ideally as close as possible to end of September which I assume you do have on record

We answered

TfL Ref: 1917-1920

Thank you for your request received by us on 25 September 2019 asking for information about Private Hire Vehicle drivers and topographical skills assessments following your previous request for information (reference: 1465-1920).

Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act and our information access policy. I can confirm that we hold some of the information you require.

Private Hire applicants are required to undertake a topographical skills assessment as part of their application. However, applicants may be exempt if they are:

• Previously licensed private hire drivers who have passed a TfL topographical skills assessment

• Licensed London taxi drivers - All London and Suburban

• Professional London tourists guides (eg Blue Badge Driver Guide)

• An individual who can provide evidence of a relevant vocational qualification in passenger transport (eg NVQ or equivalent).

The ‘BTEC Level 2 certificate in introduction to the role of the professional taxi and private hire driver’ is an exemption we currently accept from sitting a topographical skills assessment. Please visit the TfL web page for further details:

We do not record what specific qualification will have been submitted by an applicant when we decide to accept their evidence as an exemption from undertaking an assessment. We can, however, confirm the number of licences that have been issued where an exemption has been granted from undertaking an assessment where a recognised qualification has been provided by the applicant. The following table provides a breakdown of the data we hold for this:

Year Number of Private Hire drivers who submitted evidence of a relevant vocational qualification in passenger transport and were subsequently licensed
2017 (May to December) 33
2018 1,004
2019 (January to September – inclusive) 2,278

Due to a change in how the data is recorded on our system, we can only provide the requested data from May 2017. Please note that these figures are correct as of 17 October 2019 and that the values have decreased since your previous Freedom of Information request (reference FOI-1465-1920). This is because they represent drivers who are currently licensed who submitted evidence of a relevant vocational qualification as part of the application process. This means that Private Hire drivers whose licences have expired or have been revoked will not be included. I’m sorry this was not clearly explained in our response to FOI-1465-1920. We are currently investigating whether it is possible to provide this information for drivers who were previously licensed.

If this is not the information you are looking for, or if you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal as well as information on copyright and what to do if you would like to re-use any of the information we have disclosed.

Yours sincerely

Jasmine Howard
FOI Case Officer
Information Governance
Transport For London

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