30 Sep 20
News

Uber finally granted a licence for London

Ride hailing giant Uber has been granted an 18-month licence to operate in London, ending a long-running dispute with the city’s transport authority.

Transport for London (TfL) had refused to renew Uber’s licence in 2017, claiming the company was not ‘fit and proper’ to hold a private hire operator licence. Since then Uber has continued to operate in the UK capital, pending an appeal, but last November was again denied a complete licence renewal due to a a range of safety infringements.

At the time, Helen Chapman, Director of Licensing, Regulation and Charging at TfL, said: 'As the regulator of private hire services in London we are required to make a decision today on whether Uber is fit and proper to hold a licence.Safety is our absolute top priority. While we recognise Uber has made improvements, it is unacceptable that Uber has allowed passengers to get into minicabs with drivers who are potentially unlicensed and uninsured.”

However, this week a judge ruled that: “Despite their historical failings, I find them [Uber], now, to be a fit and proper person to hold a London PHV operator’s licence.”

Jamie Heywood, Uber’s Northern and Eastern Europe regional general manager, said: “This decision is a recognition of Uber’s commitment to safety and we will continue to work constructively with TfL (Transport for London).”

Uber will have to satisfy 21 conditions as part of the new licence.

TfL said in a statement: "This 18-month license with a number of conditions allows us to closely monitor Uber's adherence to the regulations and to swiftly take action if they fail to meet the required standards.”

Photo: Shutterstock

Authored by: Jonathan Manning