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General information

We grant licences for hackney carriage and private hire vehicles, drivers and operators.

To ensure the safety and comfort of the public, we must ensure that licence holders meet and maintain the required standards and comply with legislation, local byelaws and licence conditions.

The relevant legislation that we comply with is:

Policies have been adopted by the council for drivers and proprietors and these can be downloaded at the end of this page.

What is the difference between hackney carriage and private hire?

Hackney carriage vehicles (taxis) can ply for hire on a taxi rank or get hailed off the street. They can also be pre-booked. All hackney carriages must display a roof sign and have a meter fitted. Taxi owners may set their own fare scales but they must send us a copy before this can be used. For those choosing not to do this, a pre-set tariff will take effect. All taxis must display their tariff sheet in the vehicle at all times.

Private hire vehicles can only be pre-booked. They must not display a roof sign and fares are not registered with the council but are agreed with the customer at the time of booking. All private hire vehicles have to run under a private hire operator's licence in which various conditions apply.


Boston Borough Council regulates the maximum fares charged for journeys in hackney carriages ONLY. All hackney carriage vehicles must display the tariff sheet provided by taxi licensing. Fares for private hire bookings are not regulated and should be agreed at the time of booking.

Vehicle plates

Every licensed vehicle will display a plate in a visible position on the rear of the vehicle. All licensed hackney carriage vehicles will display a white plate and private hire vehicles a yellow plate. The plate displays the vehicle registration number, the make/model, how many passengers the vehicle is licensed to carry and an expiry date.

A passenger information leaflet has been produced outlining what the plates look like and a brief summary of what customers need to look out for when hiring hackney carriage and private hire vehicles.  This can be downloaded from the related documents list shown below.

Taxi ranks

Taxi ranks are situated in four locations within the town centre:-

Hackney carriage/private hire proprietors

The list of proprietors shown in the related documents at the bottom of the page does not cover all the taxi/private hire proprietors licensed within the borough but those listed have asked that their contact details are made available within this website.

Private hire operators

All proprietors licensing a vehicle for private hire must apply for a private hire operator's licence.

Any premises from which private hire vehicles operate MAY require planning permission. Operators are advised therefore to contact this authority's planning department for further information and advice. The issue of a private hire operators licence does NOT infer that planning permission is not needed.

Related documents

Size Name
[92kb] Application Policy and Guidelines relating to the relevance of Convictions - current Hackney Carriage/Private Hire Vehicle Driver Convictions Policy
[37kb] Byelaws Taxi byelaws
[247kb] Hackney Carriage Guidance Booklet - 2017 - V.4.1 Hackney Carriage Guidance Booklet
[20kb] Tariff Sheet - April 2018 Tariff sheet - April 2018
[98kb] Passenger Information Leaflet Passenger information leaflet
[25kb] Taxi Rank locations within the Borough Taxi rank locations within the borough
[27kb] Private Hire Operators Private hire operators
[37kb] Meeting the Needs of Disabled Passengers Meeting the needs of disabled passengers
[25kb] How to make a taxi complaint Guidance notes on how to make a taxi complaint
[37kb] Appreciation-Complaint Form - hackney carriage and private hire Appreciation/complaint form
[227kb] Private Hire Guidance Booklet - 2017 V.4.1 Private hire guidance booklet

The documents in this section are in Adobe Acrobat format (pdf). You will need Acrobat Reader to view these files which can be downloaded from the Adobe website free of charge.