Kendal cabbies angry over call to remove some taxis from the town centre's streets

axi driver Ikram Ullah, who says he and his colleagues are ‘constantly being hounded.’

axi driver Ikram Ullah, who says he and his colleagues are ‘constantly being hounded.’

First published in News by , Reporter

A CALL to ‘declutter’ Kendal town centre by removing taxis from the streets has been made by members of Kendal Town Council.

Councillors say the number of cabs parking in Stricklandgate gives a bad first impression of the town.

But taxi drivers have hit back, with one saying that with just three official spaces on Highgate, doing the job in Kendal is ‘worse than a nightmare’.

The official taxi rank on Highgate is outside Barclays, which has space for three vehicles.

But South Lakeland District Council (SLDC) allows cabs to park outside Farrers coffee shop, on Stricklandgate, as an ‘unofficial rank’ outside loading times.

Coun Clare Feeney-Johnson has complained about the number of taxis on Stricklandgate, and that some drivers stand outside their cabs smoking, which she said did not give a good impression of the town.

She said: “It takes over the town centre and makes it feel like a busy road rather than a pedestrianised area. “I don’t want to affect the business of taxi drivers and people who rely on them but it’s all about looking at the future.

“A viable town centre needs to be attractive – if it’s blocked up with taxis and delivery wagons you take away some of its attractiveness.”

The Mayor of Kendal, Coun Sylvia Emmott, said her concern was for the safety of pedestrians: “I’ve seen taxis queueing by the Birdcage and they shouldn’t park there, although I appreciate they’ve got to make a living.

“The conclusion we’ve come to is we probably need another taxi rank, but that’s a very long process. Personally I would like to see the area from the town hall to the library completely pedestrianised because it makes a much nicer shopping experience.”

The town council has written to SLDC and Cumbria County Council about a strategy for minimising the volume of taxis and highlighting pedestrian areas.

One suggestion is reconfiguring an area of the bus station on Blackhall Road to accommodate more taxis.

But K Cars driver Kevin Dixon said: “This is the middle of what should be a thriving town centre, and where else would you find a town of 30,000 with so few spaces – it’s worse than a nightmare.”

Ikram Ullah, another K Cars driver, said: “We’re fighting for our livelihood and we’re constantly being hounded and given tickets.

“It’s not fair because we’re here for members of the public who need us.” He added that the bus station was not central enough for a main taxi rank and Highgate was ‘easier for people to see where we are’.

Jeremy Saunders, who runs Jez’s Taxis, said: “We have to keep moving constantly because of traffic wardens but then we waste fuel driving around town.”

Other taxi ranks in Kendal are at the bus station (which has space for two cabs), outside Sphere bar on Stramongate and at Market Place, which cannot be used on Wednesday and Saturday because of the outdoor market.

Changing taxi rank locations requires a Traffic Regulation Order, which take around two years to implement.

SLDC’s Public Protection Manager Phil Greenup said it had not received any complaints about the number of taxis in the town centre, but could look at the situation as part of the ‘vision’ for Kendal.

Comments (24)

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10:29am Thu 9 Jan 14

magical trevor says...

If the town center is going to be pedestrianized, make it 100% pedestrian friendly.....it's neither one nor the other at the moment.

And......Kendal taxis are ridiculously expensive to be used frequently.
If the town center is going to be pedestrianized, make it 100% pedestrian friendly.....it's neither one nor the other at the moment. And......Kendal taxis are ridiculously expensive to be used frequently. magical trevor
  • Score: 11

12:43pm Thu 9 Jan 14

Lakeuk says...

Have to agree, the pedestrain area does still feels like a regular traffic routes for buses and taxis and seeing drivers out of the cars chatting wait plus at times sitting stationary with engines still running doesn't give a good implession.

My idea would be short term only allow the 3 ranks to be used, seeks out other sites outside the pedestrian area, suggest bus station, somewhere along road from libarary to booths, kent street - put in planning change to kick of the 2yr wait.

If finding alternative sites is difficult then I'd also suggest taxi rank outside Barclays is changes to only allow use by taxi's that are electric only !!
Have to agree, the pedestrain area does still feels like a regular traffic routes for buses and taxis and seeing drivers out of the cars chatting wait plus at times sitting stationary with engines still running doesn't give a good implession. My idea would be short term only allow the 3 ranks to be used, seeks out other sites outside the pedestrian area, suggest bus station, somewhere along road from libarary to booths, kent street - put in planning change to kick of the 2yr wait. If finding alternative sites is difficult then I'd also suggest taxi rank outside Barclays is changes to only allow use by taxi's that are electric only !! Lakeuk
  • Score: -1

2:15pm Thu 9 Jan 14

lukey88 says...

Personally as a local taxis driver it is awfully frustration when a lot of the K-cars drivers come from the larger cities to work in Kendal. It should only be possible to work as a SLDC taxi driver if you live in the surrounding area. Far to many taxis in my opinion! Keep it local!
Personally as a local taxis driver it is awfully frustration when a lot of the K-cars drivers come from the larger cities to work in Kendal. It should only be possible to work as a SLDC taxi driver if you live in the surrounding area. Far to many taxis in my opinion! Keep it local! lukey88
  • Score: 31

3:15pm Thu 9 Jan 14

redhairedgranny says...

I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people.
I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people. redhairedgranny
  • Score: 40

3:21pm Thu 9 Jan 14

magical trevor says...

redhairedgranny - that's a very unenlightened and exclusive attitude. We don't have county borders where id papers are required to be shown....you can work anywhere you like...what sort of dystopian society are you aiming for with an attitude like that?
redhairedgranny - that's a very unenlightened and exclusive attitude. We don't have county borders where id papers are required to be shown....you can work anywhere you like...what sort of dystopian society are you aiming for with an attitude like that? magical trevor
  • Score: -29

3:34pm Thu 9 Jan 14

redhairedgranny says...

Oh Magical Trevor, I wouldnt expect anything else from you. Nasty little man!
If there are too many taxis in town it is only right that those with local knowledge and that live in or around the area should be the ones staying. Taxi drivers coming in to the area from up to 80 miles away to take trade away from the local taxi drivers is wrong on every level.
Oh Magical Trevor, I wouldnt expect anything else from you. Nasty little man! If there are too many taxis in town it is only right that those with local knowledge and that live in or around the area should be the ones staying. Taxi drivers coming in to the area from up to 80 miles away to take trade away from the local taxi drivers is wrong on every level. redhairedgranny
  • Score: 31

3:39pm Thu 9 Jan 14

magical trevor says...

Where will your exclusion of certain parts of the work force end redhairedgranny? Which part of the community will be the next in your sights?....too many eateries.....get rid of anything that doesn't sell meat and two veg or Sunday roast? You simply cannot advocate limiting where people work.....now that's a nasty attitude.
Where will your exclusion of certain parts of the work force end redhairedgranny? Which part of the community will be the next in your sights?....too many eateries.....get rid of anything that doesn't sell meat and two veg or Sunday roast? You simply cannot advocate limiting where people work.....now that's a nasty attitude. magical trevor
  • Score: -27

4:24pm Thu 9 Jan 14

I know nothing says...

I complained to the Council about taxis parked outside Farrers which is a Loading Only bay when delivery vans and lorries had to park on the pavement to deliver goods.
I complained to the Council about taxis parked outside Farrers which is a Loading Only bay when delivery vans and lorries had to park on the pavement to deliver goods. I know nothing
  • Score: 11

6:24pm Thu 9 Jan 14

mailman1964 says...

councillor clare feeney -johnson & the mayor don't like taxis.
then again the council don't like cars in Kendal full stop.
perhaps we should all go round in cart & horse

the taxis provide a service that is needed & sticking them out of the way will inconvenience those that need them most.

but the councillors don't care as they don't use them.
councillor clare feeney -johnson & the mayor don't like taxis. then again the council don't like cars in Kendal full stop. perhaps we should all go round in cart & horse the taxis provide a service that is needed & sticking them out of the way will inconvenience those that need them most. but the councillors don't care as they don't use them. mailman1964
  • Score: -5

8:03pm Thu 9 Jan 14

magical trevor says...

One of SLDC's councillors is a taxi driver mailman1964.....show
s how much you know!
One of SLDC's councillors is a taxi driver mailman1964.....show s how much you know! magical trevor
  • Score: -5

8:49pm Thu 9 Jan 14

jazzactivist says...

I have to agree that taxis lined up with engines running and drivers standing around chatting and smoking doesn't look good in the town centre. It does seem to be getting worse, and I think some of it is down to the more urban culture that some of the taxi drivers from cities bring to the area. Behaviours that are easily swallowed up among the bustle of a city centre can really stand out in a smaller town. I don't see why taxis have to be in the centre of town during the day at all. I can't imagine many people in this area hail taxis on the street, so most trade must be booked in advance or phoned for at the time. What about creating some more taxi spaces at the bus and train stations, with an overspill rank at New Street? That should be enough. I also agree that priority for the taxi licenses should go to drivers who live in and around the local area.
I have to agree that taxis lined up with engines running and drivers standing around chatting and smoking doesn't look good in the town centre. It does seem to be getting worse, and I think some of it is down to the more urban culture that some of the taxi drivers from cities bring to the area. Behaviours that are easily swallowed up among the bustle of a city centre can really stand out in a smaller town. I don't see why taxis have to be in the centre of town during the day at all. I can't imagine many people in this area hail taxis on the street, so most trade must be booked in advance or phoned for at the time. What about creating some more taxi spaces at the bus and train stations, with an overspill rank at New Street? That should be enough. I also agree that priority for the taxi licenses should go to drivers who live in and around the local area. jazzactivist
  • Score: 11

11:12pm Thu 9 Jan 14

PropMeUpWithTeabags says...

I don't see what's wrong with it. When I want a taxi to go home in I want it to be there not have to wait in the pouring rain for one. If they want the town centre to be pedestrianised then you have to ban all buses and disabled drivers and taxis.
The people commenting on jobs being for local people and that the taxi drivers can't understand your local dialect come cross as being incredibly racist.
So what if the taxi Drivers have a crafty fag when they are waiting. Is the council going to ban smoking in the street. Or let's go further I find the youths that hang around the birdcage make the town look untidy. The track suit clad mums with pushchairs and poundland bags make the street look trashy. Let's all walk around like Hyachith Bucket with our stuck up noses in the air tutting about how much nicer it used to be before all the offcomers moved here.
I don't see what's wrong with it. When I want a taxi to go home in I want it to be there not have to wait in the pouring rain for one. If they want the town centre to be pedestrianised then you have to ban all buses and disabled drivers and taxis. The people commenting on jobs being for local people and that the taxi drivers can't understand your local dialect come cross as being incredibly racist. So what if the taxi Drivers have a crafty fag when they are waiting. Is the council going to ban smoking in the street. Or let's go further I find the youths that hang around the birdcage make the town look untidy. The track suit clad mums with pushchairs and poundland bags make the street look trashy. Let's all walk around like Hyachith Bucket with our stuck up noses in the air tutting about how much nicer it used to be before all the offcomers moved here. PropMeUpWithTeabags
  • Score: -5

11:23pm Thu 9 Jan 14

Jessey101 says...

PropMeUpWithTeabags wrote:
I don't see what's wrong with it. When I want a taxi to go home in I want it to be there not have to wait in the pouring rain for one. If they want the town centre to be pedestrianised then you have to ban all buses and disabled drivers and taxis.
The people commenting on jobs being for local people and that the taxi drivers can't understand your local dialect come cross as being incredibly racist.
So what if the taxi Drivers have a crafty fag when they are waiting. Is the council going to ban smoking in the street. Or let's go further I find the youths that hang around the birdcage make the town look untidy. The track suit clad mums with pushchairs and poundland bags make the street look trashy. Let's all walk around like Hyachith Bucket with our stuck up noses in the air tutting about how much nicer it used to be before all the offcomers moved here.
Perfect my mate well said .
[quote][p][bold]PropMeUpWithTeabags[/bold] wrote: I don't see what's wrong with it. When I want a taxi to go home in I want it to be there not have to wait in the pouring rain for one. If they want the town centre to be pedestrianised then you have to ban all buses and disabled drivers and taxis. The people commenting on jobs being for local people and that the taxi drivers can't understand your local dialect come cross as being incredibly racist. So what if the taxi Drivers have a crafty fag when they are waiting. Is the council going to ban smoking in the street. Or let's go further I find the youths that hang around the birdcage make the town look untidy. The track suit clad mums with pushchairs and poundland bags make the street look trashy. Let's all walk around like Hyachith Bucket with our stuck up noses in the air tutting about how much nicer it used to be before all the offcomers moved here.[/p][/quote]Perfect my mate well said . Jessey101
  • Score: -8

7:13am Fri 10 Jan 14

Moonbase says...

Lol....Bad first impression.......Is that when you eventually get into town!
This is from the K Village brigade, to discuss this surely proves these idiots have far too much time on their hands!
Lol....Bad first impression.......Is that when you eventually get into town! This is from the K Village brigade, to discuss this surely proves these idiots have far too much time on their hands! Moonbase
  • Score: -4

7:42am Fri 10 Jan 14

magical trevor says...

Good to see Moanbase rolling out the same old sentiments. Living on a different planet me old lunar (loony) mucker. Your comments really had nothing to do with the news story did they?, but you had to take the opportunity to put your oar in.
Good to see Moanbase rolling out the same old sentiments. Living on a different planet me old lunar (loony) mucker. Your comments really had nothing to do with the news story did they?, but you had to take the opportunity to put your oar in. magical trevor
  • Score: -14

9:54am Fri 10 Jan 14

greenbell says...

redhairedgranny wrote:
I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people.
Why are people coming from places like Bradford to work in Kendal when they can't even speak English?
Put the taxi rank at the bus station and limit the licences to local people.
[quote][p][bold]redhairedgranny[/bold] wrote: I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people.[/p][/quote]Why are people coming from places like Bradford to work in Kendal when they can't even speak English? Put the taxi rank at the bus station and limit the licences to local people. greenbell
  • Score: 23

12:31pm Fri 10 Jan 14

JuJuCumbria says...

i agree. I often think the line of taxi's with the drivers hanging around chatting to their mates (and smoking) makes the town look congested and unattractive. It appears to me to be a social gathering rather than waiting for a fare.
i agree. I often think the line of taxi's with the drivers hanging around chatting to their mates (and smoking) makes the town look congested and unattractive. It appears to me to be a social gathering rather than waiting for a fare. JuJuCumbria
  • Score: 13

7:30pm Fri 10 Jan 14

Moonbase says...

magical trevor wrote:
Good to see Moanbase rolling out the same old sentiments. Living on a different planet me old lunar (loony) mucker. Your comments really had nothing to do with the news story did they?, but you had to take the opportunity to put your oar in.
Does it not say in the article 'BAD FIRST IMPRESSION', my point is quite simple, just like yourself, by the time you've endured the tedious journey to reach the town hall, any visitor would be grateful of parking their car.Not worrying about blo**y taxi drivers.
[quote][p][bold]magical trevor[/bold] wrote: Good to see Moanbase rolling out the same old sentiments. Living on a different planet me old lunar (loony) mucker. Your comments really had nothing to do with the news story did they?, but you had to take the opportunity to put your oar in.[/p][/quote]Does it not say in the article 'BAD FIRST IMPRESSION', my point is quite simple, just like yourself, by the time you've endured the tedious journey to reach the town hall, any visitor would be grateful of parking their car.Not worrying about blo**y taxi drivers. Moonbase
  • Score: -1

10:56pm Fri 10 Jan 14

jett12 says...

i think we should have a taxi rank in the town center but maybe just a couple from each firm at a time maybe. i walked uptown one friday night and there was 13 taxis lined up 9 of which were k cars who im sorry to say{ at 10.50pm one night i got in a k cars and he had it on night rate i sed to him night rate doesnt start till 11pm he sed u dont like it get out and threw me out at lights}i dont use. my mother is elderly she walks to town every single day for the excersise but carnt manage the hills bk so always gets a taxi off the rank to remove this service i think it will make many people struggle
i think we should have a taxi rank in the town center but maybe just a couple from each firm at a time maybe. i walked uptown one friday night and there was 13 taxis lined up 9 of which were k cars who im sorry to say{ at 10.50pm one night i got in a k cars and he had it on night rate i sed to him night rate doesnt start till 11pm he sed u dont like it get out and threw me out at lights}i dont use. my mother is elderly she walks to town every single day for the excersise but carnt manage the hills bk so always gets a taxi off the rank to remove this service i think it will make many people struggle jett12
  • Score: 6

9:07pm Sat 11 Jan 14

Moonbase says...

greenbell wrote:
redhairedgranny wrote:
I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people.
Why are people coming from places like Bradford to work in Kendal when they can't even speak English?
Put the taxi rank at the bus station and limit the licences to local people.
Racist comments like this should not be posted.
[quote][p][bold]greenbell[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]redhairedgranny[/bold] wrote: I have to agree with lukey88. The K Cars drivers are getting a reputation for their bad attitude, bad driving, lack of local knowledge and the inability to understand local dialect. In a small town like Kendal there is not enough room for taxi drivers to be licenced to work here when they live in places like Bolton, Manchester and Bradford. Local jobs for local people.[/p][/quote]Why are people coming from places like Bradford to work in Kendal when they can't even speak English? Put the taxi rank at the bus station and limit the licences to local people.[/p][/quote]Racist comments like this should not be posted. Moonbase
  • Score: -14

7:37pm Mon 13 Jan 14

shirtbox2003 says...

as for pedestrianisation,th
e sure way to kill off a town.look at those who have it.
as for pedestrianisation,th e sure way to kill off a town.look at those who have it. shirtbox2003
  • Score: 0

3:31pm Tue 14 Jan 14

shirtbox2003 says...

take them all off for me, £30-00 Kendal to grange.robbers.
take them all off for me, £30-00 Kendal to grange.robbers. shirtbox2003
  • Score: 1

5:59pm Tue 14 Jan 14

churchy66 says...

I frequently travel up and down the country, and I have to say, the majority of pedestrianized towns have their taxi ranks on the perimeter of the town, which works just fine. Kendal's problem is the infrastructure, can not cope with traffic of any sort, be it horse and trap, car, bus etc
I frequently travel up and down the country, and I have to say, the majority of pedestrianized towns have their taxi ranks on the perimeter of the town, which works just fine. Kendal's problem is the infrastructure, can not cope with traffic of any sort, be it horse and trap, car, bus etc churchy66
  • Score: 1

7:34pm Tue 14 Jan 14

Lakeuk says...

shirtbox2003 wrote:
take them all off for me, £30-00 Kendal to grange.robbers.
Looks like you got a bargain there by taxi standards, the maximum they could of charged you for a 15 mile journey during the day is £38.50

For those type of journeys taxi's are never a good option, train or bus will always be cheaper, with taxi's you're paying a premium for the convenience of door to door travel, timing and increase room to carry goods.

Kendal to Grange :-
Train £13.20
Bus day explorer £10.30 (singles probably cheaper)
[quote][p][bold]shirtbox2003[/bold] wrote: take them all off for me, £30-00 Kendal to grange.robbers.[/p][/quote]Looks like you got a bargain there by taxi standards, the maximum they could of charged you for a 15 mile journey during the day is £38.50 For those type of journeys taxi's are never a good option, train or bus will always be cheaper, with taxi's you're paying a premium for the convenience of door to door travel, timing and increase room to carry goods. Kendal to Grange :- Train £13.20 Bus day explorer £10.30 (singles probably cheaper) Lakeuk
  • Score: 2

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