Decisions made on Blackpool taxi licences after criminal convictions revealed to town hall meeting

Licensing chiefs have thrown out two bids for taxi licences after hearing the applicants had criminal records.
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Members of Blackpool Council’s public protection sub-committee heard one applicant had been involved in the supply of Class A drugs, while another had past convictions for wounding and criminal damage.

Both applicants had also committed motoring offences in the past.

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Minutes of the meeting, which was held behind closed doors at the town hall with details of applicants not disclosed, say in both instances councillors refused the application.

Taxi licence applications have been consideredTaxi licence applications have been considered
Taxi licence applications have been considered

Ryan Ratcliffe, licensing enforcement officer at the council, told the sub-committee checks had revealed the first applicant before them had a conviction from December 2008 for several separate offences concerning the supply of Class A drugs.

They had also received six penalty points on their licence as a result of a speeding offence in March 2022.

The minutes say the applicant, who was present before the sub-committee “admitted being involved with the wrong crowd at the time” but had since “cut all ties to the people associated with the historic drug-related offences.”

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However documents add: “The sub-committee placed some relevance of the historic drug offences and decided that combined with the recent speeding offences I.U.L (the applicant) had displayed a pattern of behaviour not conducive with someone who would be deemed a fit and proper person to hold such a licence and decided to refuse the application.”

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Checks on the second application before the sub-committee revealed four convictions dating from September 2006 to June 2017, for wounding (2006), criminal damage (2016), failing to surrender to custody (2017) and driving a motor vehicle with excess alcohol (2017).

There were also two traffic offences from June 2021, exceeding the speed limit on a motorway and January 2023, exceeding the limit on a public road.

The minutes reveal the applicant “admitted full responsibility for these offences explaining that they had been drinking the night prior tobeing caught driving”,

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However councillors ruled “the convictions and offences including those for serious motoring offences were not demonstrative of the behaviours expected of professional licensed drivers.”

As a result the members of the sub-committee decided to refuse the application for the licence.