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Uber loses York licence

Uber ride request

The City of York Council has refused to grant ride-hailing app Uber a licence to operate, following in the footsteps of Transport for London in September.

The Gambling, Licensing and Regulatory Committee of the council cited that of the 296 complaints it has received regarding hackney carriage and private hire vehicles since December 2016, 155 were in regards to Uber’s service, as well as the recent disclosure that the firm covered up a data breach in 2016, as part of its decision to deny an application to renew its licence, which expires on December 24.

Uber was first granted a licence by the council in December 2015 and it was renewed for a further 12 months in 2016. At that time, the committee agreed the renewal was only granted “due to the level of public interest” in the service.

The committee expressed concerns over a loophole in which Uber could continue to operate in York by using out-of-town drivers, which it said would give the council less control over who was operating in the city.

Uber now has 21 days to lodge an appeal and can continue to operate in York until its licence expires or the appeal is heard in courts.

Meanwhile, local officials in Sheffield have lifted a ban it placed on Uber’s services after it claimed the firm had neglected to respond to requests for information. At the time, Uber said it had not received any correspondence due to a clerical error, and Sheffield commented it had received ‘satisfactory answers’ to its questions and would consider a new licence renewal application in early 2018.

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