Private hire operators licence

Who To Contact

Licensing Section
2nd Floor, Yorkon Building
Archway Road
L36 9FB

Telephone: 0151 443 2300



In order for anyone to invite OR accept bookings for private hire within the Knowsley borough, it is necessary to first obtain a Private Hire Operator licence issued by Knowsley Council in respect of a premise wholly located within the Knowsley borough.

Before you apply for a licence, you will need to find premises with planning permission or obtain planning consent for a Certificate of Lawful usage for the premises which you intend to use. To apply for a Proposed Use approval, please use this form.

There is an application fee payable to planning for such approval which is, as of 1 April 2019, £231.

If you only require a one vehicle licence from a premises at which you are resident, planning consent may not be necessary if certain licence conditions are imposed. To enquire about this possibility please email

Currently, Knowsley sets fees to recover costs of issue and compliance in respect of Operator fees. Therefore, fees will depend on how many vehicles you would wish to operate. Each licence can be issued for a one year or a five year period.

The 2019-20 Fees as from the 1 April 2019 are:

Number of vehicles 1 Year New 1 Year Renewal 5 Year New 5 Year renewal
1 Car £200 £190 £700 £665
2-10 Cars £255 £245 £892 £857
11-50 Cars £375 £355 £1312 £1243
51+ Cars £450 £430 £1575 £1505

The Deregulation Act 2015 made changes to the way in which a Knowsley Licensed Operator can legally work. Since October 2015, a Knowsley licensed operator can now subcontract bookings to an operator licensed by another council.

It is still the case that a Knowsley Operator can only use drivers and vehicles licensed by Knowsley and it is still the case that if an operator subcontracts to a licensed operator in another controlled district then that subcontractor operator may only use cars and drivers licensed by that other district.

It is also still the case that a council cannot issue a licence to an applicant who is based in another district. That would be 'ultra vires' of the council’s powers. Each council is responsible under Part II of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act of 1976 for licensing and supervising operators based within its own district.

Please call the contact centre on 0151 443 2300 for further assistance

Useful documents: