Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence

What is a hackney carriage vehicle?

  • A hackney carriage can park on an authorised taxi rank
  • It can be booked for hire or be hailed by prospective passengers within the boundaries of Cheshire East Council
  • It will display white plates on the front and rear of the vehicle
  • It must be driven by a Cheshire East Council licensed driver at all times, whether or not the vehicle is working
  • It must have a fare meter (fares are set by the council)
  • Cheshire East is zoned. The zones correspond to the areas of the three former authorities.

What is the effect of zoning?

The effect of zoning is to continue the licensing arrangements for hackney carriages which the three former authorities had in place before Cheshire East came into being on 1st April 2009 including existing tariffs and byelaws. This also includes some vehicle conditions.

It means that a hackney carriage licensed in one of the zones is not allowed by law to ply for hire, including standing on ranks, in either of the other zones.

Will zoning affect private hire vehicles and operators?

No. All private hire licences granted or renewed on or after 1st April 2009 will be subject to conditions common across the whole of the Cheshire East

Guidance for a hackney carriage vehicle licence application

What you need

  • Completed application form  Hackney Carriage Vehicle Application (PDF, 271KB)
  • The current insurance certificate/cover note in the name of the applicant showing public/private hire use. If your insurance certificate refers to a schedule of vehicles insured under the policy you must supply this with your application.
  • The vehicle registration document/V5, or fully completed V5C/2
  • Renewals only – If your annual insurance policy is due to expire after you have submitted your application and prior to your MOT date, you must supply your new insurance certificate before we can issue a licence. 
  • First grants only - If your vehicle has been modified or adapted to be a wheelchair accessible vehicle you must provide with your application a copy of the VCA M1 approval certificate, Voluntary IVA Certificate or Certificate of Conformity.

As of the 8 January 2018 you must submit your completed application and required documentation in person by appointment at one of our Customer Service Centres. Cheques must be made payable to ‘Cheshire East Council’ To make an appointment please call Cheshire East Customer Services on 0300 123 5015.

New Check and Send Service

A new Check and Send Service will be available for Joint Driver and Vehicle applications from the 18 September 2017. The purpose of this service is:

  • to check all sections of an application are filled out
  • to make sure that all supporting documents (including photos) are submitted with the correct applications
  • to check the correct fee has been paid
  • to provide information on the application processes

Each applicant who does not accept the service needs to be aware this could cause a delay in processing their application if the correct information is not submitted.

Using the check and send service may be faster than submitting an application yourself however using the Check and Send service does not guarantee you will be granted a licence. 

The fee for this service is £10.00 and is available at the Customer Service Centres.

Application evaluation process-vehicle testing

Wherever you decide to make your application your vehicle must be tested at the relevant test centre which will be either:

  • Environmental Hub (ANSA), Cledford Lane, Middlewich, CW10 0JR or
  • Macclesfield MOT Testing Station, Unit 6 Pool Street, Macclesfield, SK11 7NX

The testing centre will test your vehicle against a set of Hackney Carriage Vehicle Test Guidelines (PDF, 134KB) as set out by the Licensing Team.

MoT exemption

When your vehicle has met the test criteria, the licence granted will exempt the vehicle from requiring a standard MoT. You can tax your vehicle at the Post Office by completing a V112 Declaration of exemption form, you must do this in person.

You must carry your vehicle licence with you in the vehicle that it relates to as proof of MoT.

Vehicle fees

  • Hackney carriage vehicle - £305.00 annual fee
  • Transfer of licensed vehicle from one person to another - one off fee of £40.00
  • Hackney carriage vehicle test - £78.00
  • Hackney carriage vehicle retest - As of the 2 July 2018 there will be a fee of £37.00 for MOT retests

Tariff cards

Congleton – zone 1 (blue triangle)

Crewe & Nantwich – zone 2 (red triangle)

Macclesfield – zone 3 (gold triangle)

Hackney Carriage By-Laws

Vehicle licence plate transfer

If you have transferred a vehicle to a new proprietor please notify us using the Vehicle Licence Transfer Form (MS Word, 68KB), The new vehicle owner must complete a hackney carriage vehicle application form, a valid certificate of insurance and the V5 document or a document as proof of sale of the vehicle and the fee of £40.00.

Vehicle licence plate surrender

If you wish to surrender a Vehicle Licence, you must complete the Surrender Form (MS Word, 68KB) and return it with your paper licence, plates and stickers.

The surrender of Vehicle Licence Plates is free of charge.

Contact us


0300 123 5015

Cheshire East Council
Municipal Buildings
Earle Street


Call in to our Customer Service Centres

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