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Funding available for new taxi drivers in Preston

Posted on - 13th February, 2020 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Business, People, Preston Council, Preston News
Taxi lines at Preston Railway Station Pic: Tony Worrall
Taxi lines at Preston Railway Station Pic: Tony Worrall

Preston City Council has teamed up with training provider Antrec Limited to provide assistance and training for applicants wanting to become a taxi or private hire driver in Preston.

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The partnership has allowed the council to access funding that could reduce application costs by between £300 and £450 per person.

Antrec Limited is also helping to deliver regular induction sessions at the Town Hall, and the VRQ training course for anyone interested in becoming a licensed driver.

The first of these new induction sessions was held on 23 January 2020 when 19 people attended to receive information about becoming a professional driver, funding opportunities and the application procedure along with undertaking English and Math assessments.

The next courses will be held on Tuesday 18 February and Monday 16 March.

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Deputy Leader and Cabinet member, Councillor Peter Moss, said: “The new process has provided an efficiency saving for the council and by working in partnership with Antrec Limited it has allowed us access to relevant funding streams. I hope this will encourage more people to consider being a professional driver and it should assist the trades in attracting new drivers.

“We have very high standards for taxi and private hire drivers in Preston and I am confident that these new arrangements will enable those new to the role to reach and maintain these standards in delivering an excellent service to citizens and visitors to Preston.”

Operations and Business Partnership Manager at Antrec Limited, Frank West, added: “We are delighted to have been chosen to work in partnership with Preston City Council.

“The qualification and taxi licence application process puts public safety and customer service at the forefront, both things we know the council are keen to champion. We look forward to continuing our inductions for new applicants and to help maintain the high standards expected of taxi and private hire drivers across Preston.”

Preston has approximately 960 licensed taxi and private hire drivers. Licences are issued for a period of three years. The application fee is £120, the knowledge test is £33, and the DBS application fee is £44. The VRQ training and exam is approximately £300, but funding is now available.

If you’re thinking about becoming a driver ring 0333 023 7450 to book a place on a future induction course.

Read more: Have your say on how to improve quality of life in Preston and South Ribble

Would you fancy yourself as a taxi driver in Preston? Let us know in the comments.

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