East Devon District Council

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Policy Hackney carriage vehicle and driver licensing policy

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3. Signs on hackney carriages

  1. A hackney carriage must be of such design or appearance or carry such distinguishing marks as we require so that it is clearly identify it as a hackney carriage.
  2. When in use as a hackney carriage, all vehicles must display a roof sign of a type and design approved by us. The sign must include the word 'taxi' in black letters on the front and rear of the sign. The sign must be yellow in colour and the words 'for hire' included on each side of the word 'taxi'. The sign must be 750 mm (30 inches) in width by 150 mm (6 inches) deep by 165 mm (6.5 inches) high. This condition to apply from 1 December 2003 to all hackney carriages licensed for the first time by us. In all other cases the condition to apply from 1 January 2006 except where approval is granted for additional advertising when it will apply from the date the vehicle is presented for approval of the livery/advertisements. As from 1 August 2004, a smaller version of the corporate roof sign will be introduced as an alternative for hackney carriage vehicles licensed with this authority with no change to the lettering or colouring in order that drivers may have a choice in relation to the size of the roof sign they display, the sign to be 450 mm (18 inches) in width by 150 cm (6 inches) deep by 165 mm (6.5 inches) high. With the exception of the above-described lettering, no other markings will be permitted on the roof signs. Purpose-built and converted vehicles with integral signs will be exempted from the requirements as to sign size, colour and the wording on the back. All roof signs must be illuminated and connected to the taxi meter and operate so that the sign light is extinguished when the hackney carriage is hired.
  3. One association badge not exceeding 100 mm x 100 mm (4” x 4”) may be carried on the near side of the windscreen.
  4. No advertising will be permitted on the exterior or the interior of the vehicle except:
    1. Exterior advertising:
      1. Full or part livery, for instance, advertising material covers the complete or part exterior body shell except for
        • the boot lid*
        • back door (below the window line) in the case of an MPV vehicle*
        • back double doors where fitted (below the window line)*
        • the front elevation, for instance, radiator grill and the area either side of it
        • the windows and any other glass areas
        • the wheels
        • the bumpers

          * apart from vehicle manufacturer’s badges with the chief executive’s prior approval.
      2. Single doors, for example, the advertising material may cover only the lower panels of both front and rear side doors on both sides of the vehicle.
    2. Interior advertising:
      1. Advertising is permitted on:
        • the base of the occasional (tip-up) seats
        • leaflets contained in an approved leaflet dispenser
        • the top of the partition bulkhead (non glass area) where fitted
        • floor carpets (logo of vehicle manufacturer or immediate carpet supplier only).
      2. Advertising is not permitted on any other surfaces, including:
        • seats (other than base of tip-up seats)
        • roof lining
        • partition
        • interior door panels (apart from leaflet dispenser)
  5. All advertisements must be approved by us as set out within the Guidelines for Advertising on and in Licensed Hackney Carriages and there must be full compliance with the guidance. A copy of the document can be obtained from our licensing office. All proposals will be considered on their merits but the following advertisements are not permitted:
    • those with political, ethnic, religious, sexual or controversial texts
    • those for escort agencies, gaming establishments or massage parlours
    • those displaying nude or semi-nude figures
    • those which seek to advertise tobacco
    • those which seek to involve the driver as an agent of the advertiser
    • those likely to offend public taste (including material depicting bodily functions (such as urination) and genitalia and the use of obscene or distasteful language)
    • those which seek to advertise more than one company/service or product
    • those which detract from the integrity and/or identity of the vehicle.
  6. These conditions shall not apply to any sign or other matter which is required by law to be displayed in or upon a hackney carriage or which is required as part of a Devon County Council school transport contract.