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Taxi Fare Rise Rejection Causes Disgust In Aldershot & Farnborough

The licensing committee of Rushmoor Borough Council have rejected taxi fare increase proposals made by the region’s taxi trade and are implementing smaller increases instead. A journey of 2 miles will now cost £5.84, an increase of 24p. This does not compare favourably to the increases proposed by cab drivers themselves. The taxi trade wanted a brand new running mile rate to be introduced back in June which would have resulted in a 2 mile journey costing £6.20 or 36p more than what the council have recommended.

Drivers also wanted a reduction in the distance travelled before the initial charge came up on the meter. The new proposal was submitted in September and would have led to a 2 mile journey costing £6. Yet this was also rejected out of hand by the council. Instead, it confirmed their original decision to install their own scheme.

This has caused outrage amongst members of the trade. Rushmoor cabbie, Graeme Marshall, said that the council ignored the pleas of drivers and dismissed them without a second thought. He said that he was disgusted with the 1.51% increase and also described it as ‘ludicrous’. Marshall stated that the council’s idea for fare reduction for elderly passengers was not practicable.

According to a representative of the trade, the cost of running a cab business has increased significantly and there needs to be price increases to reflect that. A1 is a cab firm in Rushmoor that prides itself on providing 5-star service but admitted it needed customers to pay 5-star money if the company is to survive. Drivers have to pay for their vehicles, insurance and fuel.

Yet Martin Tennant, a councillor on the Rushmoor committee, believes that the right decision has been made and is adamant that cabbies can still make a living. He admitted that the council is concerned about ensuring the taxi trade in the region is a profitable one but stated that the needs of residents must also be taken into account. Tennant said that people were feeling squeezed because of the recession and it was necessary to make sure customers did not feel under even more financial strain.

According to Tennant, more than one quarter of all cab drivers in Rushmoor actually live outside the borough. This leads him to believe that these drivers choose to work in Rushmoor and if it was such a terrible place, no one would make such an effort to work there. The new fees will come into place on 3 December 2012.

Source: gethampshire.co.uk