Uber secures six month extension for Brighton licence as council monitors outcome of London row

 
Rebecca Smith
Uber is hoping to win over Transport for London to maintain its licence in the capital
Uber is hoping to win over Transport for London to maintain its licence in the capital (Source: Getty)

Brighton has renewed Uber's licence to operate for another six months as it awaits the outcome of the firm's battle to keep hold of its licence in the capital.

In a statement, Brighton and Hove City Council announced the decision today after a meeting earlier in the day.

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It said the decision was taken to allow it to monitor the outcome of the Transport for London (TfL) Uber decision, and consider whether any of the information arising from the case had direct implications for the operation in the city.

The council said:

While there was no evidence to suggest that public safety had been compromised, there are a number of concerns, and Uber are working with the council to address these and reassure residents and visitors about their safety.

There are far fewer Uber drivers operating in Brighton than London: around 40, while there are some 40,000 in the capital.

The council said a decision on the process to look at the licence at the end of the six month period will be taken in the new year.

Fred Jones, head of cities at Uber, said:

We’re delighted people in Brighton and Hove can continue to use Uber. More choice and competition is good for consumers as it raises service levels across the board.

Uber has been embraced in Brighton with around 10,000 riders using the app in the city every week.

Last month, Uber announced it had appointed Laurel Powers-Freeling as its new independent non-executive chair in the UK, as it seeks to defend its right to operate in London.

Transport for London (TfL) opted not to renew Uber's private hire licence for operating in the capital in September, saying Uber was "not fit and proper to hold a private hire operator licence".

Talks have since been held between the transport body and the company to try and address TfL's concerns, with Uber boss Dara Khosrowshahi jetting to London for the discussions.

And last month, Uber launched its appeal against the loss of its London licence, adding that it hoped to "continue having constructive discussions with Transport for London", which could resolve the situation without the need for the case to go to court.

Uber's drivers in the capital can continue to operate there until the appeals process is exhausted, which could take years.

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