COUNCILLORS have backed an increase in taxi fares in the town.

In March, the council’s taxi and other licensing committee considered four requests for a rise in the hackney carriage table of fares. The last increase was back in 2014. 

As of February 2020, the average fare in Warrington was £5.20.

Compared to all 361 authorities in the UK, this ranks Warrington at number 325 – in the price comparison chart compiled by Private Hire and Taxi Monthly. 

The committee was told a joint proposal put forward by four members of the taxi trade would result in an average percentage increase in fares of around seven per cent, with the fouling charge rising from £30 to £50.

The committee voted to increase the fares and fouling charge. It also backed the proposal for an annual tariff review.

However, due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the trade acknowledged it was not the right time to consult on changes to the tariff during the initial lockdown.

But amended fare tariffs came before the committee during its virtual meeting on Tuesday and they were approved. They would result in an average increase of seven per cent.

Sagheer Zaman, a member of the taxi trade, welcomed the decision.

He said: “This is excellent news for the taxi trade in Warrington. The last fare increase came back in April 2014.

“Due to inflation, the living wage, petrol and insurance costs, this was needed.

“Work during the pandemic virtually fell flat on its face, we had no customers from stations and business parks with a lot of people working from home.

“There was no night-time economy too – drivers have had to rely on Government grants.”

The committee recommended the fare increase for a decision by the council’s cabinet and approved a public consultation on the changes.

The fare increase would only apply to the town’s hackney carriages and not private hire vehicles.