Rugby taxi drivers in town hall protest

The cabbies want fewer licences to be issued
The cabbies want fewer licences to be issued

More than 50 taxi drivers pulled up outside Rugby town hall to protest at the number of cabs – which they say is damaging trade and causing congestion.

The Rugby Hackney Drivers and Owners Association held the demonstration at noon on Monday and asked the council to agree to a survey which would be used to decide whether the town needs more taxis.

Secretary of the association Grev Mills said there was not enough space in the town for more taxi drivers.

He added: “We are here to present a petition signed by approximately 90 people to show them that Rugby does not need more taxis.

“The council has ignored us time and time again – it’s outrageous.

“Rugby’s congestion is their fault.”

Jagmohan Singh Anand, known as Tony Singh, from Rugby, said the 13 taxi rank spaces in the town centre were not enough.

The 56-year-old added: “I’ve been a taxi driver for over 20 years and my income has gone right down in the last year, which makes it difficult to pay the mortgage.”

A spokesman for Rugby Borough Council said: “The council carried out extensive consultations with the Rugby Hackney Owners and Drivers Association (RHODA), individual drivers and customers before deregulation, and we continue to have regular meetings with the trade.

“Deregulation aims to provide the best possible service for customers, while benefiting the borough’s economy.

“Since taxi licensing was deregulated last year, 39 new licences have been issued and taxi companies continue to apply for new licences.

“We have noted that taxi ranks get congested at night, and councillors have agreed to carry out a scrutiny review with the aim of identifying locations for new ranks to ensure the night-time economy and customer needs are met.”