The Number of Pedicabs in London May Be About to Drop

It’s been on the cards for a while now, but it looks like the pedicab crackdown is closer than ever

For a long time now, a trip to Soho or Oxford Street has also meant dodging the luminous, hot pink and fluffy pedicabs that blast through the streets, leaving a soundbite of ABBA’s Dancing Queen in their trail. But, this may only be the case for a little while longer as a proposed new licencing system will likely outlaw many of London’s rickshaws.

The three-wheeled cabs regularly pop up in the news whenever there’s another tale of someone being charged an exceptionally high fee for a short trip. Just last month, a Belgian tourist paid £450 for a 1.3-mile ride to her hotel, bringing the fact that the UK’s pedicab laws haven’t been updated since 1869 to the public’s attention again.

Now, it’s been reported that these are set for an update as a new licensing system will feature in a bill in the King’s Speech. The system will allegedly target the ‘anti-social’ aspects of pedicabs, including unregulated fares, unsafe drivers and noise pollution. This is expected to be a stand-alone bill in Rishi Sunak’s legislative plan, which will be announced on Tues 7th November with the new session of Parliament, and could be implemented as soon as next summer.

Image credit: Serge Zykov, Flickr