Private hire operator licence

Licensing services available during COVID-19

Solihull Licensing walk in centre is currently closed.

If you need to contact the Licensing team please email

A private hire operator licence is required to enable a person to accept or invite bookings for private hire vehicles.

Operators should ensure that they have the following before making an application:

  • when you submit your application you will need to provide proof of eligibility to work in the UK, i.e. your current passport and any relevant visas or work permits if the passport is not British. If you do not hold a current passport please contact us for further advice
  • premises within the borough
  • the applicant must have completed a disability awareness course at Solihull College within the last 3 months
  • appropriate level of public liability insurance in place to include employees, vehicles and drivers under their control
  • a basic DBS from the Disclosure and Barring Service dated within the last 3 months (Not required for existing drivers)
  • 2 references , preferably on letter headed paper. These could be from a previous employer or someone known to you personally. Please ask them to include contact details as we do check references
  • application form


Once you have all of the above you should attend the Licensing Office to submit your application at:

Licensing Office
SMBC Central Depot - Block F
Moat Lane
B91 2LW

Office opening times are:

  • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday - 9.30am to 2.00pm
  • Wednesday - closed

Your application will then be processed and allocated to a licensing Officer who will contact you to arrange a convenient appointment for an interview.

What to expect during the interview

You should bring photo ID and proof of your right to work in the UK if you do not hold a British Passport. You should also bring any advertising material you may have.

The officer will talk to you about what is expected of you as a Licensed Operator in terms of documents that need to be retained, what happens during an inspection and other relevant information. You will then be asked some questions about how you intend to run your business such as handling complaints and preventing plying for hire.

Issuing the Licence

Providing that the Officer is satisfied that you are suitable to hold an Operator’s Licence, they will then take the payment and make an appointment to visit your premises. Once the premises has been inspected, you will then be issued your licence.

Your licence will be issued for a 12 month probationary period.

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