Motorists in Newcastle city centre faced disruption after a second day of action by some taxi drivers.
Taxis descended on the same rank between Haymarket and Eldon Square on Tuesday, creating congestion in the area, with buses struggling to access the bus station.
The disruption follows Thursday’s widespread traffic chaos, organised by the newly-formed Newcastle Hackney Carriage Driver Association (NHCDA) which intends to raise awareness about a number of issues for drivers in the city.
According to organisers, who dubbed it a ‘Go to Work Day’, the action is being arranged to highlight the lack of rank spaces in Newcastle .
On Thursday buses were stuck in traffic for an hour and at one point all services were told to avoid the area altogether, throwing timetables into disarray and leaving passengers lining up.
Speaking after last week’s action, Newcastle councillor Arlene Ainsley, cabinet member for transport and air quality, said: “We have been working closely with representatives from the newly formed Newcastle Hackney Drivers Association to identify new rank spaces across the city, along with improved signage.
“It is unfortunate that rather than continuing to engage with us through this new representative group they have instead resorted to an unofficial protest causing disruption to the city centre impacting on the journey of hundreds of road users.
“I recognise the Hackney carriage drivers are concerned by the number of licenses being granted to private hire operators but this has been seen in cities across the country because by law, local authorities are not able to impose a cap on the number of licences we issue
“The council regards taxis to be an essential part of our public transport offer in the city.
“We are keen to work with the taxi trade to develop locations that work in the best interests of all road users and the city’s plans to improve air quality.
“We would encourage the association to continue to engage with us and take productive steps to improve the situation.”
A petition calling for Erewash cabbies to be allowed to have fully-tinted windows in their taxis has been rejected over fears that vehicles could be used to enable the abuse of vulnerable children and adults.