A Plymouth City Council blunder which meant private hire drivers didn’t have to take the famous “knowledge” test has been corrected.
PlymouthLive reports that back in March, councillors voted to accept a controversial new taxi licensing policy but a misprint that wasn’t noticed meant they approved the test for new hackney drivers only.
That error meant for a three-week period, anyone applying for a private hire licence wouldn’t have had to take the test.
However, following a full council meeting on Friday 20 May, the mistake has been rectified.
Plymouth City Council said that made it clear to new applicants that the policy was likely to be returned to Full Council and therefore maybe subject to change at any time.
They have apologised for any confusion and will offer a full refund to anyone who know wishes to withdraw from the application process.
Following the decision, it means that anyone who fancies becoming a private hire driver will once again have to spend days scrutinising the map of Plymouth, learning its geography and the best routes to get a passenger from A to B.
A Plymouth City Council spokesperson said: “There was an error in the original Taxi Licensing Policy published in March, which advised that you only needed to complete the Knowledge Test (KOP) if you wanted to become a hackney carriage driver.
"We have always made it clear to new applicants that the policy was likely to be returned to Full Council and therefore maybe subject to change at any time.
“The corrected policy, which requires all new applicants (private hire and hackney carriage) to complete the KOP test was approved by Elected Members at Full Council on Friday, May 20. This means that all new applications or those still in progress can only be approved once all of the pre-requisites, including the KOP test, have been completed.
“We are sorry for any confusion caused. If anyone wishes to withdraw from the application process they will be offered a full refund.”
The amended wording to the policy now means that once again, before an application for a drivers licence can be approved, the individual must have passed a medical, submit an Enhanced DBS and Certificate of Good Conduct, Driving Standard’s Test, Safeguarding training, Plymouth Ambassador training and the Topographical Knowledge of Plymouth (KOP) test.