Wednesday 30 March 2016 9:18 pm

Cabbies group abandons bid to have rival Uber’s licence revoked in London

Action for Cabbies, a London taxi drivers group, has abandoned its attempt to mount a legal challenge to Uber's licence to operate in the capital.

The group launched a crowdfunding campaign earlier this year with the aim of raising £600,000 to fund the first phase of a judicial review (JR), arguing that in 2012 TfL was wrong to grant a licence to Uber and its drivers. 

However, in the latest update to the page being used to raise funds, Artermis Mercer, founder of Action for Cabbies and the wife of a cab driver, revealed that as the current campaign total stands at just over £351,000, "it doesn’t look like we are going to hit the required £600k to start action against TfL".

Instead, the funds raised will be used to pay for a JR of TfL's plans to install  credit card readers in every black cab.

If contributors do not cancel their existing pledges by 5pm on 5 April, Mercer said: "Any monies pledged will be used for a JR against TfL for making drivers pay passenger credit card fees and for making drivers have a fixed terminal in the passenger/driver compartment."

Mercer said that while it is agreed by most that credit card acceptance should be mandatory "making drivers pay passenger fees and being made to use terminals of TfL’s choice… is simply wrong".

"Many drivers already accept credit cards with systems they’ve purchased, so why should they be forced to use another system (at their expense) when they already have a system that works perfectly well," she added.

"If TfL are not challenged for imposing passenger credit card fees on drivers, this will be the thin end of the wedge, as three per cent will soon become four per cent, then five per cent, who knows where it will end."