Replacement vehicle procedure

Notes applicable to all replacement vehicles: In addition to the requirements listed below, all replacement vehicles must be under 5 years of age and each passenger seat must be fitted with a seat belt and headrest.

Private hire vehicle replacement

The vehicle will be issued with its own PHV number and will be licensed for one year. This allows the hire company to use the vehicle for a number of customers who may require it throughout the year. All new/replacement private hire vehicles must be any colour other than silver.

Check if the vehicle being licensed is on the council’s list of approved vehicle models. If the vehicle is not on the approved list, please email licensing@cheltenham.gov.uk to arrange for an inspection to be carried out by licensing officers. We advise that this inspection is booked prior to the purchase of a new vehicle.

Hackney carriage vehicle replacement

All hackney carriages must be fitted with a meter calibrated to Cheltenham Borough Council’s approved fares and an approved top light. If the vehicle is not already fitted with an in-built top light you can arrange to rent one temporarily from the council for a fee.

Replacement hackney carriages can be licensed either temporarily or for a full 12 months, with different requirements applying to each.

Temporary replacements: The vehicle will be issued with a temporary plate number which will be the same as the plate number of the vehicle being replaced - but please note that temporary replacement vehicles can only be licensed for a maximum of 2 months

If the vehicle being replaced is wheelchair accessible, then the temporary replacement vehicle must likewise be wheelchair accessible. If the vehicle being replaced is silver in colour, then the temporary replacement vehicle must likewise be silver in colour.

Full 12 month replacement licences: A new hackney carriage can be licensed for a full 12 months subject to it complying with the council’s policy for new hackney carriages, including – but not limited to – the requirements that it must be wheelchair accessible and silver in colour. The vehicle will be issued with its own HCV number and will be licensed for one year.This option allows you to use the vehicle for a number of customers who may require it throughout the year. 

Check if the vehicle being licensed is on the council’s list of approved wheelchair accessible vehicle models. If the vehicle is not on the approved list, please email licensing@cheltenham.gov.uk to arrange for an inspection to be carried out by licensing officers. We advise that this inspection is booked prior to the purchase of a new vehicle.

Application process for new or replacement vehicles

  1. Read the accompanying guidance notes to ensure that the vehicle complies with our policy.
    • Hackney Carriage: Check if the vehicle being licensed is on the council’s list of approved wheelchair accessible vehicle models. If the vehicle is not on the approved list, please email licensing@cheltenham.gov.uk to arrange for an inspection to be carried out by licensing officers. We advise that this inspection is booked prior to the purchase of a new vehicle.
    • Private Hire: Check if the vehicle being licensed is on the council’s list of approved vehicle models.If the vehicle is not on the approved list, please email licensing@cheltenham.gov.uk to arrange for an inspection to be carried out by licensing officers. We advise that this inspection is booked prior to the purchase of a new vehicle.
  2. Telephone an approved testing station 1) Swanbrook on 01452 712386 (option 3) or 2) Ubico 01242 387780 arrange an appointment for the vehicle to have an MOT and fitness test.
  3. Complete the online vehicle application form. You will pay the fee as part of this process, and you can upload vehicle documents here.
  4. Take the vehicle for the MOT and fitness test at one of the approved testing stations. Please note: Hackney carriages should make sure a fully calibrated meter has been installed prior to the MOT and fitness test. The testing station will provide you with an MOT pass certificate and a fitness certificate.  
  5. To finish the application, visit Cheltenham Borough Council during one of the 'licensing open sessions':

Wednesday

13:00 – 16:00

Friday

13:00 – 16:00

You will need to produce the following documentation to the licensing officer unless they were uploaded at the application stage:

  1. V5 vehicle registration document OR bill of sale
  2. Valid insurance certificate (public / private hire)
  3. MOT certificate and fitness pass sheet (obtained from the testing station)
  4. M1 certificate (wheelchair accessible vehicles only)
  5. Meter calibration certificate (hackney carriages only)

Once we have received all the documents above, we will determine the vehicle's fitness to be licensed. If the vehicle is fit to be licensed, the applicant will be issued with a plate and window badge.

You will need to collect your vehicle licence plate from the Municipal Offices during one of the open sessions.

Please ensure that the appropriate person is insured and licensed to drive the vehicle, as once the licence is issued the vehicle becomes a licensed hackney carriage or private hire vehicle.