Skip to main content

Taxi licenses – Private Hire Operators

Anyone who wants to accept private hire bookings must be licensed as a private hire operator. By using a licensed operator, passengers can have confidence that the driver and vehicle are also licenced by the Council.

Before applying for a new licence, please take some time to read and understand the specific guidance for Private Hire Operators as detailed below.

If you meet all the terms and conditions as outlined hen you can apply for a licence using the application form below and return to Allerdale House in Workington, or by email to .

Applications that do not comply with the above may be considered by the Licensing Panel and the fee may not be refundable. Please contact for further help and guidance.

Download Private Hire Operator Application Form

To uphold public safety and to assist in assessing the suitability of an applicant for a private hire operator licence, the Licensing Committee approved a new policy on 11 September 2019.

The role of a Private Hire Operator (PHO) goes beyond taking bookings and dispatching vehicles. In the course of doing that, the PHO will obtain significant amounts of personal information. It is therefore vital that a PHO is as trustworthy and reliable as a driver. To enable consistent and informed decisions to be made, it is important to have a working test of fitness and propriety.

Other concerns relate to staff used on the telephone and radios. There is no reason why a PHO cannot be required to undertake checks on those they employ/use within their company to satisfy themselves that they are fit and proper people to undertake that task and retain that information to demonstrate compliance to the local authority. Any failure on the part of the PHO to either comply with this requirement, or act upon information they obtain would have serious implications on the continuing fitness and propriety of the PHO.

To address these concerns the Licensing Committee have approved the following changes to the application criteria for a private hire operator:

  1. The provision of a basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate, to be no more than 28 days old at grant/renewal of licence; and
  2. The provision of written details regarding a Private Hire Operator's vetting procedures for their staff, to be provided at the grant/renewal of licence and to notify the Licensing Authority within the licence duration if changes to the procedure are made; and
  3. Where an application is made in the name of a limited company, partnership or other business structure, the conditions in a) and b) above apply to each director or partner of the applicant organisation.

Your licence for Vehicle, Driver or Operator licence(s) are dependent upon your compliance with the Conditions of Application and Terms & Conditions set forth by the Council to operate within the Private Hire trade. Please review the attached document carefully prior to completing your application.

Private Hire - Conditions & terms

  • Please provide full names and addresses of two referees from whom the Council may seek character references.
  • The attention of applicants is drawn to the attached conditions of application for licences.
  • Your attention is drawn to the fact that supplied information is to be stored on computer.  You therefore have certain rights to view the information.  Such requests must be made in writing and a fee maybe payable.  Your rights are set out in the Data Protection Act, 1998.
Council Strategy design

Cumberland Council

On 1 April 2023 local government in Cumbria changed, with Cumberland Council providing all your council services.  

Don't worry though, your bins will be emptied as normal, and you'll still be able to speak to the same team about any enquiries to do with things like council tax, benefits, planning or any other service.

Find out more about the changes.

Keep up to date by finding and following the new council on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. 

Sign-up to receive updates straight to your email inbox.

Accessibility and language tool

Use the ReciteMe toolbar for accessibility and language options