Coronavirus: Changes to restrictions

Only meet indoors with people you live with or your support bubble. Up to 6 people or 2 households can meet outside. Work from home if you can. If you have symptoms get a test and stay at home.

Coronavirus: Information and advice

2. Hackney carriages and private hire

Oldham Council currently licences over 1,300 Dual drivers, around 1000 Private hire vehicles and a maximum of 85 Hackney carriage vehicles.

The main difference between Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles are the way in which they are booked. Private Hire vehicles must be booked in advance by a licensed Private Hire Operator company, whereas Hackney Carriage vehicles can be hailed in the street or can hold on an approved rank without needing to be pre-booked.

Oldham Council issues Dual Driver Licences. This allows the holder to drive both Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles.

The council has set objectives in relation to the licensing of Drivers, Vehicles and Operators. They are: -

  • Ensuring passengers have safe journeys at a transparent price;
  • Ensuring vehicles are safe, accessible and reducing their impact on the environment;
  • Ensuring drivers are safe and know what they are doing.
  • To provide a quality service to the public within the Borough.
  • The protection of children and vulnerable adults

Policies and fees

Online reporting forms

New driver applications

Things you need to know before you start. You must:

  • Be 21 or over
  • Be eligible to work in the UK
  • Have held a driver’s licence for 2 or more years

If you meet the above criteria, you need to have all the relevant documents before you apply. The documents are listed below:

Driving Standards Assessment Certificate – refer to our guidance for new applicants document below for details on how to obtain this

  • Current DVLA drivers’ licence
  • Current passport if you have one
  • Proof of right to work – if your passport is not British you will need to prove this another way, please refer to our guidance for new applicants document below for a link to the.GOV website to see what documents you can use
  • Proof of National Insurance number
  • Recent passport-sized photograph

If you have lived outside the UK for more than 3 continuous months, since the age of 18, a Certificate of Good Conduct is required. Please refer to our Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy for more information.

In addition to the above, you are also required to obtain the following:

  • DBS Certificate and Driving Licence check – available from TaxiPlus (previously known as Personnel Checks) on their website, You must sign up to the DBS Update Service with your certificate, within 30 days of the issue date on it. Failure to do so will result in a new DBS being required.
  • TaxiPlus - webpage
  • Group 2 Medical – the D4 Medical form we require is the same one used for bus/lorry drivers and can be downloaded here.
  • D4 Medical form – Download

If you are unable to access your GP for your medical due to COVID, you can book obtain one with a private company via this link 

Whether you are having a private medical, or you are attending your normal GP surgery, you must have a GP/Doctor Declaration completed to confirm whether you have met the Group 2 Medical Standards. The declaration form can be downloaded here:

Once you have all the required documents, please email

As part of the application process you will be required to attend Driver Awareness Training. This training is provided by our Licensing Officers and will take place virtually via Microsoft Teams. It is recommended you attend the training on a PC, Laptop, iPad or Tablet to benefit from the presentation. You may attend on your mobile phone, however, visibility may be reduced due to the small screen.

Following your training, you will also undergo a Knowledge Test. This test is comprised of two parts, Section A and Section B. There are 15 questions in each section and you must get 10 questions right (in each section) in order to pass. The questions in Section A are based on driver and vehicle licence conditions, child sexual exploitation and basic numeracy skills. Section B is based on locations, and routes from one location to another; you will be required to choose the shortest most practicable route. All questions are multiple choice and you have one hour to complete the test.

Full details on the application process, a list of knowledge test locations, and useful links and information regarding documents can be found in our Guidance for New Applicants document here -

Dual Driver Licences are issued for a period of 3 years, unless otherwise approved.

Driver renewals

You can submit your driver renewal application up to 8 weeks prior to the expiration of your current licence. Applications can be submitted online by logging into your personal account. To access the webpage to log in to your account and make your application, please use the link below. If you have forgotten your password, simply click the “Forgotten Password” link on the page and follow the instructions.

As part of your renewal application, you may be required to update other documents or have other checks carried out, such as a new medical or a DVLA check. You can view when you current checks expire by viewing your current licence record on your personal account.

Please note: your DBS expiry date should be ignored if you are registered to the DBS Update Service. As long as your Update Service registration is active, you will not be required to apply for a new DBS certificate. If you need a new DBS, you can apply for one below:

If you cannot access your GP to obtain a Group 2 Medical due to COVID, you can access a private company to do so. You can book an appointment with the private company here:

Whether you are having a private medical, or you are attending your normal GP surgery, you must have a GP/Doctor Declaration completed to confirm whether you have met the Group 2 Medical Standards. The declaration form can be downloaded here:

If obtaining a private medical, the Doctor completing the form must have access to at least a summary of your medical records.

The D4 medical form (also used for bus and lorry drivers) can be accessed here:

All completed medical and declaration forms should be handed in to the Licensing Office.

A copy of the form will be taken and the original will be returned to you. You can drop your medical form off on a Tuesday or Thursday between 2 and 3pm only. We are no longer accepting email copies of medicals due to issues with not receiving the correct information.

When you have submitted your renewal application, you must email a copy of your DVLA driving licence, so a member of the team can process your application. Email it to: 

Once your renewal has been processed, you will be contacted to advise when you can collect your new badge and licence.

Vehicle licence applications

Any vehicle being used for public or private hire, and carries 8 passengers or less, must be licensed with the Local Authority of where it will be operating; in this case, Oldham Borough Council.

The only people permitted to drive a vehicle licensed in Oldham are those who hold a Dual Driver Licence with Oldham Council. This applies to both public and private hire vehicles. Anyone who is found driving a licensed vehicle, without holding a Dual Driver Licence, is liable for prosecution under the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.

To be eligible to licence a vehicle you must:

  • Be 21 or over
  • Complete the licence process within one month of the vehicle being tested

What you need to know about vehicle ages and testing requirements before you start:

  • Vehicles under 3 years of age are tested once per year
  • Vehicles between 3 and 8 years of age are tested twice per year
  • Vehicles between 8 and 12 years of age are tested three times per year

For detailed information on vehicle requirements please refer to our Hackney Carriage & Private Hire Policy which can be found at the top of this page.

New and renewal vehicle applications

To apply to licence a vehicle, or renew a current vehicle licence, you can do this online using the following link

You will be able to select your own vehicle examination date and time and pay the fee at the end of the process. If you have a private registration number on your vehicle, please email licensing@oldham.gov.uk to apply, as you will be unable to use our online booking system.

If you are renewing a vehicle you can make your application up to 30 days in advance. We encourage applicants to apply as far in advance as possible to ensure there are plenty of tests available prior to your current licence expiring. If you are late renewing your vehicle and your licence expires, you must submit a new application. The system will no longer recognise your vehicle as a renewal.

Once you have submitted your application you will receive an email containing your vehicle examination test date and time. You must keep that email safe; it also contains the dates and times of your future tests.

You must attend our approved vehicle testing station for your vehicle examination to be carried out:

Moorhey Street Depot, Moorhey Street, Oldham, OL4 1JF

If your vehicle passes, the test station will notify us of this result via email. You are then required to provide the following documents to us, all documents must be in your name and address:

  • V5C (Logbook) – pages 1 & 2
  • Certificate of Insurance

If you have recently bought a new vehicle and are still waiting to receive your new logbook, you must provide the following:

  • New Keeper Slip
  • Bill of Sale (receipt)
  • Proof of Road Tax

N.B. We will only accept these documents if you bought the vehicle less than 2 months ago.

Once you have passed your vehicle examination test, you must email your documents to: 

When we have received them, we will process your application and contact you when your plate and licence are ready to collect.

Transfer of ownership

If you buy or sell a licensed vehicle you must notify the Licensing Office within 14 days. Failure to do so is an offence.

To apply to transfer a vehicle licence into your name, please complete the form below. Once complete, please return the form and all supporting documents to licensing@oldham.gov.uk. Details on documents required, and how to make payment can be found on the form.

Change of vehicle

If you want to change your vehicle mid-licence, you can do so using our online form below. You can use the online form to apply & upload your documents. We will be notified of your application and a member of the team will contact you to notify you of the fee required and a link to make payment. Once payment has been made, you will receive details of your vehicle test date and time.

Private hire operators

Operators of private hire vehicles are required to be licensed. An Operator is a business that makes provision for the invitation or acceptance of bookings for a private hire vehicle.

Oldham Borough Council will grant an operator’s licence unless the applicant is not a fit and proper person to hold one.

All base staff must have a Basic Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check. This requirement will not apply to any base staff that hold a current Dual Drivers Licence. The DBS check must be carried out before initial employment commences and a new check must be carried out every 3 years thereafter.

As a private hire operator, you may be required to obtain Public Liability Insurance and Employee Liability Insurance. You should seek advice from the Licensing Service as to whether you require this.

To apply to be a licensed private hire operator, please use the form below. Once complete it should be returned to: 

Executive hire

There is no legal definition to determine the difference between executive and standard private hire. In each instance it will involve a booking being accepted by a licensed private hire operator and a licensed vehicle and driver meeting the requirements of the booking.

The main distinction between the two can be described as the type of client catered for, the type of service offered, and the cost of the service provided.

In determining whether a booking is considered executive hire, consideration will be given to the following factors:

  • How the booking is made
  • How payment is made
  • Type of vehicle used to undertake the journey
  • Dress code of the driver
  • Business plan of the operator

An operator is expected to prove to the council that it has met the above requirements, and declare that it will continue to do so, before any exemptions for vehicles they operate are considered.

Vehicle requirements

Executive hire vehicles are expected to meet the same criteria as standard private hire vehicles with the following exceptions:

  • Type of vehicle – the vehicle must be of an executive, prestige standard. Examples of this type of vehicle are as follows (this list is not exhaustive):
    • BMW 7 series
    • Mercedes – S Class or E Class
    • Lexus – GS or LS
    • Jaguar XJ
    • Audi A8
  • The vehicle must be less than 3 years of age when first licensed for executive hire.
  • Manufacturers tints are permitted, however, after market tints or films are not permitted
  • The vehicle cannot be fitted with a data head, taxi meter or radio
  • The vehicle will not be permitted to display any form of advertising including company or private hire operator details (business cards of the executive operator details are permitted)

Drivers of executive hire vehicles licensed in Oldham must be licensed as Dual Drivers with Oldham Borough Council and fulfil the requirements of that application process. Details on how to obtain a Dual Driver Licence can be found at the top of this page under the heading “New Driver Applications” near the top of this page.

To make an application under executive hire, for exemption to be considered, please use form below.

Once complete, please return the form to licensing@oldham.gov.uk.