The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers is the 104th Livery Company of the City of London, having received Grant of Livery in February 2004 and our Royal Charter in October 2013. With our origins dating back to an original Act of Parliament in 1654 we have earned our place as an integral part of the functioning of the historic City of London.
Today, the objectives of The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers are more relevant than ever, and they are spelled out quite clearly in our Royal Charter:
To raise public awareness of the high standards of the London Hackney Carriage trade and industry and to work to ensure continuous improvement in the health of of the industry through managed growth and development, ensuring that the London cab trade remains attractive to those passengers who live or work in London and preserving the elements of the industry that are considered irreplaceable – such as ‘The knowledge of London’.
We are not a union. We are not a lobbying group. We are not partisan. The membership of The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers represents every single facet of the taxi trade – from the taxi drivers to vehicle manufacturers, fleet operators, insurers, accountants, technology providers, repairers, knowledge tutors – and, of course, most crucially, the customers who use taxis for moving around London.
Our goal is the preservation and promotion of what is widely regarded as the most professional, most iconic, and most respected taxi service in the world. We do not wish to see our historic and much-loved trade reduced to the low standard that is witnessed in many other cities around the globe.
Londoners and those who visit London still crave the assured service, safety and accessibility that only a licensed taxi can provide. The rest of the United Kingdom looks up to the London taxi trade as the standard to be followed. The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers has many members from outside of the capital – because we recognise that where we lead, others often follow.
The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers is unique. There is no other organisation with our broad spread of membership. There is no other organisation with our knowledge and experience of the taxi industry. There is no other organisation that enjoys such a rich history – and yet is so forward thinking.
Our position as a neutral, approachable and established taxi trade organisation means we continue to attract more interest than ever before. This is appropriate because perhaps at no other time has our historic trade faced more questions about its future.
Our position is clear. London has always needed and continues to need, a flexible, accessible, safe, secure and utterly reliable taxi service. London has that, but it is easily lost if we do not all strive to protect and preserve the formidable combination of knowledgeable drivers, unique vehicles and the assuredness we all enjoy of the world’s greatest taxi service.
The Worshipful Company of Hackney Carriage Drivers welcomes all those who wish to join us, talk to us, or share our truly unique perspective and insight into the historic licensed London taxi trade and industry.