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7 Unique Wedding Venues In (And Near) Norfolk

It’s finally spring! Storms are subsiding, the sun is becoming less shy, and the clocks are going forward again at the end of the month. Butterflies are back and spring fever is in the air, and perhaps your wedding plans and dreams for the summer are suddenly springing to mind, putting a spring in your step, and making you want to spring into action. 

Of course, you want your wedding to be as special and perfect as can be, including the venue, the food, the guests, and the decoration. What better place to achieve that than the East of England, with its stretches of coastline, rolling countryside, history-packed towns and villages, and countless unique venues? 

If you have something a little different in mind, but you’re not quite sure what, check out these 10 stunningly unique wedding venues in and near Norfolk for inspiration! Just maybe, one will even stand out to you as a candidate…

Happy Valley, Grimston, PE32 1DN

long dining tables for barn wedding Happy Valley Peterborough
The so-called Dutch barn is boho-inspired, with panoramic views of the mystical lake and meadowland. 
(Via Happy Valley)

Happy Valley describes itself as a ‘magical woodland venue and glamping retreat’. The venue is situated in 9 acres of woodland, and features stripped-back barns with original features, a lake with its own island, glamping accommodation, a luxury lodge for a bridal suite, and beautiful landscapes. The venue is suited for around 150 guests, with various options available. Why not find out more by registering for their Wilderness Wedding Fair and Open Day on the 26th of April? 

toad hall happy valley bridal suite with hot tub norfolk
Toad Hall, the Luxury Lodge and Bridal Suite, comes with a private hot tub. 
(Via Airbnb)

The Keeper And The Dell, Ringland, NR8 6JW

wooden cabin and devotion den at The Keeper and The Dell Norfolk
The Devotion Den under the cabin can be used for a photo booth, an outdoor chill space, or a dance floor. 
(Via The Keeper and The Dell)

A truly relaxed and inviting atmosphere, The Keeper and the Dell is a fully licensed secluded venue which boasts its rustic barn, traditional canvas marquee, camp kitchen and saloon, fire pit, and ancient woodland setting. Surrounded by a medieval grove, it’s open from June to September, when the romantic country setting can be used by brides and grooms and their guests to marry, celebrate, and sleep under the stars. The owners of the venue take pride in offering their guests exclusive use of the venue over a weekend, as well as a lot of creative freedom and options to choose from.

rustic barn living area at The Keeper and The Dell Norfolk wedding venue
The rustic barn has a main area that is licensed for ceremonies, and a living room which is perfect for signing the wedding license or setting up a gift table with a guest book, for example. 
(Via The Keeper and the Dell)

The Boathouse, Ormesby Broad, NR29 3LP

wedding ceremony chairs on wooden deck at Ormesby Broad, Norfolk
The outdoor deck offers an unobstructed view of the broad, making it perfect for an alfresco reception in the summer. 
(Via The Boathouse)

Amidst 11 acres of scenic parkland on the banks of Ormesby Broad is The Boathouse – a country fayre pub and unique wedding venue. The Boathouse has it all, from fine dining to fully equipped luxury woodland lodges. It promises idyllic romance and enchanting views, and offers space for up to 120 people. There is a spacious outdoor terrace overlooking the water for alfresco receptions, as well as a private indoor bar with dance floor. The Boathouse is decorated in a contemporary, ‘New England’ style, designed to fit seamlessly into the nature around it. 

The Breakfast Room wedding reception dining area at The Boathouse, Ormesby
The Breakfast Room at The Boathouse can comfortably accommodate 120 people at round tables for a seated reception.
(Via The Boathouse)

Thursford Garden Pavilion, Fakenham, NR21 0AS

vintage carousel ride at Thursford Garden Pavilion Norfolk wedding venue
The extraordinary vintage carousel ride at Thursford Garden Pavilion’s ‘magic museum’. 
(Via Day Out With The Kids)

Thursford Garden Pavilion is a uniquely versatile venue which prides itself on providing extraordinarily elegant and luxurious wedding experiences. You can choose from a selection of areas for your special day, including al fresco ceremony areas, a rustic barn, a posh pavilion, and, excitingly, their ‘magical museum’ with its gelato parlour, vintage fair rides, and other historical curiosities. On top of that, newlyweds can choose to stay at the Holly Lodge – an 18th century period property with some elements even dating back to the 13th century.  The lodge includes a bridal suite and a converted stable which can sleep 12 guests. It was once used as a stopover for pilgrims on their way to the shrines at Little Walsingham, giving it a sense of real historical magic. 

The luxurious Garden Pavilion at Thursford
The luxurious Garden Pavilion reception area at Thursford. 
(Via Hitched)

The Fire Pit Camp, Wendling, NR19 2LT

vintage double-decker bus at fire pit camp norfolk wedding venue
The vintage double-decker bus with adjacent seating area at Fire Pit Camp.
(Via @emilie.may.photo)

If you love glamping and festival-style weddings, consider booking the Fire Pit Camp for your special day. The venue is fully licensed in- and outdoors, and offers exclusive use of its campsite as well as the warehouse, vintage caravan, and retro bus for your wedding. The campground offers much to explore, including an intimate meadow for outdoor ceremonies, natural fields, glamping accommodation, a large fire pit, an industrial warehouse with covered alfresco dining area, an outdoor bar and celebration area, and a vintage double-decker bus. And the bridal suite is a handmade hazelwood dome! All the necessary amenities are available, including bathroom facilities, hot water, and electric/solar power. If you love festival vibes, being surrounded by nature, and being eco-conscious, make sure you find out more about the Fire Pit!

glamping tents and bridal suite dome at the fire pit camp norfolk wedding venue
Glamping accommodation and the bridal dome at The Fire Pit Camp.
(Via The Fire Pit Camp)

Cley Windmill, Holt, NR25 7RP

circular dining room at cley windmill
Cley Windmill hosts wedding ceremonies and receptions for up to 25 people in its circular dining room. 
(Via Easy Weddings UK)

For more intimate ceremonies and/or receptions for up to 25 people, consider booking Cley Windmill for your unique wedding venue. The windmill’s beautiful round dining room is fully licenced for ceremonies. There are also a balcony and a garden, perfect for scenic wedding photographs! Cley Windmill offers b&b rooms which can accommodate 16 guests, or up to 20 if you also book the nearby self catering cottage – The Old Bakery. 

windmill hotel room at Cley windmill, norfolk
Cley Windmill offers unique bed and breakfast accommodation for up to 16 guests.
(Via The Telegraph)

Felbrigg Lodge Hotel, Aylmerton, NR11 8RA

Felbrigg Lodge Hotel, Aylmerton
Felbrigg Lodge Hotel, situated in acres of woodland and not far from the coast,  is perfect for smaller, idyllic weddings. 
(Via Travelzoo)

Situated within seven acres of woodland and gardens, Felbrigg Lodge Hotel is a beautiful wedding venue ideal for more intimate gatherings of up to 34 people. The wedding package gives you exclusive access to the hotel’s twelve beautiful rooms, including the honeymoon suite, and most importantly, the hotel’s very own heated indoor swimming pool, sauna, and hot tub. The Lodge is perfectly situated, close to the parkland walks in the National Trust’s Felbrigg Park, and only four miles away from the coast.

indoor swimming pool with wooden ceiling at Felbrigg Lodge Hotel
Felbrigg Lodge Hotel boasts a heated pool, hot tub, and sauna. 
(Via Hotels.com)

Whether you’re just looking for inspiration or ready to make decisions, we hope our list of extraordinarily unique wedding venues in the Norfolk area has given you some great ideas. As always, you can count on ABC Taxis for all your taxi needs, whether you’re viewing wedding venues or getting married. Enjoy the spring and enjoy the sunshine!

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International Women’s Day 2020 In Norwich

International Women’s Day, which is celebrated every year on the 8th of March, is taking place this coming Sunday! You may already know that this holiday is about celebrating the achievements of women around the world, but why do we do this? And how?

In this week’s blog, we’ll tell you about the origins of the upcoming holiday, including how it started and why it is important. We have also put together some ideas for things to do if you feel like getting involved in the Women’s Day celebrations in Norwich this weekend!

The Origins of Women’s Day: A Timeline

So where did this holiday come from, and why? Maybe you have only started hearing about it more recently, but International Women’s Day (IWD) has been around for well over a century! 

28 February, 1909: National Woman’s Day is held in New York City, organised by the Socialist Party of America. Women lobby for fair working conditions and the right to vote (suffrage), which they won’t achieve until August 1920.

New York women demanding fair pay for sewing work in the early 1900s
United States’ women textile workers demanding equal pay. (Via Kheel Center)

1909 – 1910: Many activists are inspired by the idea, and attendees at the Second International (an organisation of socialist and labour parties) agree to adopt the holiday, finding it a good strategy to promote equal rights and suffrage for women. 

19 March, 1911: International Women’s Day is first celebrated in Austria-Hungary, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland. In Austra-Hungary alone, more than 300 demonstrations take place to fight gender discrimination and secure women’s rights to study, work, and vote. Over one million women and men attend the rallies across the world. In the USA, it takes place in February. 

February 1913: Russian women observe their first International Women’s Day on the last Saturday of the month. 

8 March 1914: International Women’s Day is held in Germany and England, where women continue to fight for the right to vote. 

Women take to the streets in Petrograd in 1917 to demand fair pay and equality in what is now known as the February Revolution.  (Via History Today)

8 March 1917: In Petrograd (now St. Petersburg), the capital of the Russian Empire, women textile workers demonstrate across the city, marking the beginning of the February Revolution, the first of two revolutions that eventually ended dynastic rule in Russia and brought about the USSR. The Soviets officially adopted the holiday when they came to power, although it was a working day until 1965, when it was declared a national non-working day.

After this series of events, Women’s Day was mainly celebrated by communist countries and movements. This includes commemoration in China starting in 1922, with an official holiday and half-day off for women proclaimed in 1949 after the founding of the People’s Republic. A women’s march was also led by communist leaders in Madrid in 1936, on the eve of the Spanish Civil War. 

Circa 1967: Second-wave feminists adopt the day as one of activism, and over the next decades women’s groups, leftists, and labor organisations continue to cooperate to call for equal pay, equal economic opportunity, equal legal rights, reproductive rights, subsidized child care, and the prevention of violence against women. 

Stamps of the German Democratic Republic depicting women of different nations for International Women’s Year
Stamps of the German Democratic Republic depicting women of different nations for International Women’s Year, 1975. (Via Wiki)

1975: The United Nations celebrates International Women’s Year, and names the decade to follow (‘76 to ‘85) the United Nations Decade for Women. As a result of the international focus on women’s rights in this year, a number of women-centred institutions were established, including the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) and the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). These continue to lead in promoting women’s human rights worldwide. 

1996: the UN begins adopting an annual theme for International Women’s Day. The first one was “Celebrating the Past, Planning for the Future”. 

21st Century: As corporations begin to sponsor and promote IWD events and feel-good messages, especially in the West, social reforms fade into the background, and many organisations (including the International Committee of the Red Cross and the UN, among others) initiate campaigns to raise awareness of the disproportional hardships women continue to face globally.

IWD Around The World

Women’s Day is an official holiday in 27 countries, from Afghanistan to Zambia. It is also widely observed in many countries where it is not a public holiday, such as Cameroon, Romania, and Chile. The context and celebrations of the holiday vary significantly from one country to another. 

In some countries, such as Russia, the day has lost its political context over time and is now simply a day to honour women and feminine beauty. Men often give women little gifts and flowers on this day. In countries like Bulgaria and Romania, the day is also observed as an equivalent of Mother’s Day, where children traditionally give small gifts to their mothers and grandmothers. In Italy, on the other hand, men traditionally give women yellow mimosas on Women’s Day. 

International Women’s Day started as part of socialist and feminist political movements in the West in the early 1900s, but it is now truly international, with many cultures, countries, and people celebrating it in many different ways. 

Whether the origins of the holiday are significant to you, you think the holiday is a nice opportunity to appreciate the women in your life, or this is just like any other weekend to you, why not get out of the house and celebrate? Here are a handful of events taking place in Norwich over the weekend for International Women’s Day. 

Events In Norwich This Weekend

A Feast of True Stories: In Praise Of Great Women at the Bicycle Shop

The Bicycle Shop on St Benedict Street teams up with Norwich Arts Centre and The Sainsbury Laboratory for another edition of A Feast of True Stories. For Women’s Day, they’re arranging a three-course meal, welcome drink, and table service accompanied by talks surrounding the great achievements of ordinary women. Doors open at 18:30 and the event begins at 19:00. You can check out the full menu and book your place here!

Women’s Day at the Buddhist Centre

The Norwich Buddhist Centre at 14 Bank Street is celebrating IWD with a Women’s Dharma Workshop. The aim is to ‘reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination’ by women. The day will include metta meditation, stories of courageous dharma practitioners, and a shared lunch. The event is open to all, and payment is by donation. 

Walking Women (first Tuesday of every month)

This one is not directly related to International Women’s Day, but it’s a monthly activity organised by women, for women. On the first day of every month, women meet for an approximately 1.5 hour walk through the spectacular Holkham Estate. If you love sociable walks, find out more here and join them sometime!

Whether or not you’re celebrating International Women’s Day, we hope our brief history lesson was informative, and we wish you a wonderful weekend! 

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6 Great Breweries To Visit In Norfolk

East Anglia is known for being home to of some of the best breweries in Europe. Brewers here have long maintained the tradition amidst fields upon fields of the world’s best malting barley. These days, with the help of refined technology and the rising popularity of craft beer, the independent brewing scene is thriving. Beer is not only a beverage, but a whole field which is simultaneously an artistic endeavour, a culinary speciality, and a branch of science. 

Breweries are a point of pride for Norfolk, so if you have an interest in the art of brewing or you just like to drink beer, don’t miss the opportunity to visit some of the best local breweries. We have compiled a list of some of our favourites for your next birthday, office party, or family day out. Of course, you can always rely on ABC Taxis to get you there and back. 

Redwell Brewery

The Arches, Norwich, NR1 2EF

redwell brewery taproom bar
The opening of the taproom bar at Redwell Brewery, via Norwich Evening News

Founded in 2013, Redwell is one of the first craft breweries in the UK to offer an entirely vegan and gluten-free range. Situated just outside of Norwich city centre near Whitlingham Country Park, the brewery boasts one of Norwich’s biggest beer gardens, making it an especially perfect destination in warmer months. 

redwell brewery beer garden
A summertime shot of the beer garden at Redwell Brewery, via Twitter

Redwell is all about the vibes, and they organise monthly brewery tours that you can join, as well as numerous other beer, music, and craft events. They also offer tours and tasting sessions with their head brewer, which can be booked for private groups. 

As for their beer, their popular range includes a crisp pilsner, a fruity extra pale ale, and a super-hopped west coast PA, but they also experiment with hybrid brews such as their Steam lager and White IPA. 

Woodforde’s Brewery

Slad Lane, Woodbastwick, NR13 6SW

woodforde's brewery pub the fur and feather
Woodforde’s Brewery Tap, the Fur and Feather, via TripAdvisor

If you have been to the pub in Norfolk, you will undoubtedly have heard of Woodforde’s Brewery. The company was born back in the 60’s, when a pair of good friends with a passion for homebrewing and authentic flavours began handcrafting their own beers. In 1990, the brewery won CAMRA’s ‘New Breweries Champion Beer of Britain’ award with its Wherry – a beer it is still famous for today. Since then, the brewery has won over 130 awards for its delicious creations. 

The brewery in Woodbastwick (about 20 minutes from Norwich by cab) welcomes visitors to book a brewery tour online for just £15. Of course, you can also pop in for a pint or book a table at their very own country pub, which is called Fur and Feather. 

The Wolf Brewery

Norwich Road, Besthorpe, NR17 2LA

 the wolf brewery attleborough sainsburys contract
The Wolf Brewery team upon securing a contract with Sainsbury’s in 2012, via Diss Mercury

The Wolf Brewery is another well-established Norfolk brewery. Founder Wolfe Witham was well known in Norwich during the 1980s as the man behind the Reindeer brewpub, which was very popular at the time. The brewery first opened in 1995 on the former Gaymers Cider site in Attleborough, but outgrew those premises and invested in a new brew plant in 2006. They have now also installed their own bottling plant so that their prize-winning ales can be enjoyed further afield. 

The Wolf Brewery is a member of the East Anglian Brewers’ Co-Operative, which is working with local farmers towards ‘full traceability’ – meaning the beers they brew can be traced all the way from grain to glass. Among the brewery’s prize-winning beers are Straw Dog (wheat beer), Coyote (‘a well balanced hoppy ale’), and Golden Jackal (‘a hoppy thirst-quenching golden session bitter’).

You need to contact the brewery in order to book a tour, but it also has a shop where you can buy their beers as well as other bits and pieces. (You can also order beer from the Wolf online!) 

Lacons Brewery – The Honingham Buck

The Street, Honingham, Norwich, Norfolk, NR9 5BL

Located in Great Yarmouth, Lacons is a well-established Norfolk brewery that has been around since the mid-18th century, and moved into its current premises in 2013. But Lacons does more than just beer, distributing over 2,000 product lines including beer, wine, spirits, and soft drinks. 

Lacons Brewery is well-known for Lacons Encore, an award-winning amber ale, as well as the rest of its multi-award winning core range. This is complemented by their seasonal beers, including small batches of heritage ales and keg beers which include Quell, a cult favourite, and the hoppy Steam Craft Lager. 

Honingham Buck Outdoor
The Lacons Brewery public house – the Honingham Buck, via The Honingham Buck website

Unfortunately, the brewery does not advertise tours. However, since 2015, Lacons has operated a public house in the village of Honingham. There, they showcase their multi-award-winning ales complemented by a locally-sourced contemporary menu. The public house also has 8 luxury en-suite rooms available, making it the perfect place for a weekend getaway. 

Humpty Dumpty Brewery

Church Road, Reedham, NR13 3TZ

humpty dumpty brewery reedham
Humpty Dumpty Brewery, via Broads National Park

Humpty Dumpty Brewery is known for creating delicious real ales since 1998. Based in Reedham at the heart of the Norfolk broads, the 18-barrel microbrewery’s playful name comes from a type of steam locomotive which operated on the Norwich-Lowestoft line in the early 20th century. These were-front heavy, and looked as though they might fall off the line, which led to the nickname Humpty Dumpty.

Humpty Dumpty Brewery is great to visit for its on-site shop (open daily from Easter to November), which sells a full range of their bottled beer and branded merch as well as other local produce including cider, wine, and soap among others. You can also arrange a brewery tour and tasting which can include a fish and chip supper. Do note that there is a minimum number of guests, and availability depends on working schedules. 

Chalk Hill Brewery

Rosary Road, Norwich, NR1 4DA

Chalk Hill Brewery is the longest-running independent brewery in Norwich. The custom-built, 15 barrel brew plant was developed simultaneously with the Coach and Horses next door, starting in 1993. The founders were Bill Thomas, Tiny Little, and David Blake, a group of friends with mutual interests in sailing and beer.When the pub opened in July ‘93, it served some of Chalk Hill’s first real ales, including Chalk Hill Best. This bitter has been refined over the years into the brewery’s best, and remains a favourite for many. 

chalk hill brewery head brewer robbie
Head brewer Robbie offers free tours of Chalk Hill Brewery on request, via Chalk Hill Brewery

They now brew a range of seven real ales, which they continue to supply the Coach and Horses, as well as the Alexandra Tavern on Stafford Street. They were first featured in CAMRA’s Good Beer Guide in 2018. The brewery offers free tours on request. These are led by head brewer Robbie, and last about 45 minutes, finishing with a tasting session. 

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An In-Depth Look At Our Eco Fleet

At ABC Taxis, we prioritise efficiency as well as the comfort of our drivers and passengers alike. As a company, we are conscious of the effects of road transportation on the environment. That is why our eco fleet of taxis consists entirely of top-of-the-range hybrid cars and efficient minivans. Curious about our eco vehicles? Join us on an in-depth tour of their key specifications and highlights to find out what makes them comfortable, efficient, and environmentally friendly. 

(Please note that all of the below vehicles are available with a variety of options, and we have selected particular ones to give you an idea of their specifications. The below specifications do not apply to all of our cars.)

Toyota Auris Estate

toyota auris estate
The Toyota Auris Estate, via Auto Trader

The Toyota Auris Touring Sports (aka estate) hybrid is well-known as a reliable and competent vehicle. The more recent revival of the Corolla in hybrid form (which also features in our fleet), has largely replaced the Auris as Toyota’s go-to hybrid car. However, the Auris still has many admirable features, including its unfussy, functional design and spacious interior. 

The Auris hybrid is often complimented for how relaxing it is to drive thanks to its supple suspension and minimal noise both inside and out. It also has a spacious boot which makes it perfect for taking passengers to the airport or train station. 

Specifications (1.8L VVT-i Hybrid):

Power 134bhp / 100 kW
Battery capacity6.5 Ah
Top Speed112 mph
0-60 mph11 secs
CO293 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro 5
Fuel consumption70 mpg
Luggage Capacity507 L

Because the Auris has been around since 2009, it is not the most efficient of the hybrid vehicles available today. However, Toyota is a trailblazer in the world of electric cars, having released the first hybrid Prius in 1997. The Japanese manufacturer has proven time and time again that they are committed to constant innovation, and this can be seen in the newer hybrid Corollas. 

Toyota Corolla Estate 

toyota corolla estate landscape
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid, via Carbuyer

Named Car of the Year 2020: Hybrid Winner by WhatCar?, the Toyota Corolla Estate Hybrid is an undeniable industry leader. The especially efficient and smooth-driving new models have taken the Hyundai Ioniq’s place at the top of the ranks. Unsurprisingly, the car has excellent reviews, with frequently mentioned pros including its efficiency, super smooth handling, seamless transitions between electric petrol and electric power, spacious interior, and roomy boot. 

Specifications (1.8L VVT-i Hybrid):

Power 120 bhp
Battery capacity3.6 Ah
Top Speed111 mph
0-60 mph8.5 secs
CO276 to 83 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro 6 AM
Fuel consumption55.4 to 65.9 mpg 
Luggage Capacity598 L

Hyundai Ioniq

Hyundai Ioniq with ABC taxi branding
Many of our cabs at ABC taxis are Hyundai IONIQ Hybrids

The Hyundai Ioniq is also a leader in its field and a muti-award-winning one at that. The best thing about this hybrid vehicle is its ability to drive on electric power only, and therefore to travel decent distances (up to 39 miles for the Plug-In Hybrid) with zero emissions. In many ways, it is similar to the Kia Niro – both cars are sold in three electrified forms: a hybrid model (petrol engine + electric motor), a plug-in hybrid (with a bigger battery that can be charged externally for more range), and a pure electric vehicle (EV). 

Unlike many hybrids, which are fitted with CVT, single-speed gearboxes, both versions of the Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid have a six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, making it much smoother and quieter than the average CVT. The interior design of the Ioniq furthers the car’s exceptional efficiency, with lightweight materials selected specially to reduce the vehicle’s weight and fuel consumption. The car also has great aerodynamics, with a class-leading drag coefficient of only 0.24. 

Specifications (Hybrid 1.6 GDI):

Power 141 bhp
Battery capacity1.56 kWh
Top Speed115 mph
0-60 mph10.8 secs
CO284 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro 6d-Temp
Fuel consumption78.5 mpg 
Luggage Capacity443 L

Toyota Prius

prius+ marketing image
A Prius+ hybrid car, via Toyota

As we have already mentioned, the hybrid Prius has been around for over 20 years, and it has evolved significantly over that time. Named Green Car of the Year 2016 by Auto Express, the Prius can drive at up to 36mph on electricity alone when sufficiently charged (if you’re gentle on the accelerator), meaning it is exceptionally quiet and relaxed for driving in the city. 

At motorway speeds, the petrol engine kicks in for additional power, but drivers say this is unobtrusive and still relatively quiet, emitting little more than a faint drone during steady driving. If you floor the accelerator, however, the CVT gearbox will send the revs shooting up and cause some engine boom. The Prius Hybrid is popular for its low servicing costs and excellent fuel economy, even when set to four-wheel drive. The Prius is also the most efficient non-plug-in hybrid. 

Specifications (1.8L Petrol Hybrid Automatic):

Power 122 bhp
Battery capacity7.2 Ah
Top Speed112 mph
0-62 mph10.8 secs
CO275 – 84 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro 6DG
Fuel consumption59.6 – 67.3mpg 
Luggage Capacity502 L

Mercedes-Benz Vito 

white mercedes vito van on road
The Mercedes Vito Panel Van, via Motor1

The Mercedes Vito is a popular minivan among taxi firms, as it is designed to be ideal for urban operations and frequent recurring trips in terms of its efficiency. There are many options to choose from in the Mercedes Vito range, including diesel engines, the fully electric eVito, panel, crew, and tourer vans, and even the black cab edition. 

The Vito Tourer van offers comfortable seating for up to 9 people, as well as plenty of room for luggage. It’s available in various options, including three vehicle lengths and two trim lines, meaning the van is customisable and versatile. Many of these models include BlueEFFICIENCY packages as standard, meaning they come with smart eco features such as ECO start/stop which turns of the engine when stationary, a smart alternator which recharges the battery when coasting or braking, and rolling-resistance optimised tyres.  

Specifications (114 Tourer Pro L2 Auto):

Power 102 bhp
Battery capacity N/A
Top Speed120 mph
0-60 mph11.8 secs
CO2171 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro E6
Fuel consumption44 mpg 
Luggage Capacity550 L

KIA Niro 

white Kia Niro in forest
The Kia Niro has a very comfortable design, image via Green Car Reports

When talking about efficient cars and especially top-of-the-range hybrids, the KIA Niro is another one that is sure to be mentioned. Thanks to its SUV-like design, the Niro has a comfortable, spacious interior that allows for a natural seating position in the front and the back, as well as an excellent view of the road. 

The Niro Plug-In Hybrid, like most EVs, is practically silent in electric mode, and even its fuel engine is very quiet, making it very pleasant to drive. The regular hybrid, too, is often praised for the seamless (and nearly imperceptible) way the petrol engine and electric motor work together via its six-speed automatic gearbox. Like most hybrids, it also has a regenerative braking system to recover energy. 

Specifications (1.6 GTI Hybrid 3):

Power 139 bhp
Battery capacity8.9 to 15.6 kWh
Top Speed101 mph
0-60 mph11.1 secs
CO2100 g/km 
Emissions standardEuro 6
Fuel consumption65.7 mpg 
Luggage Capacity382 L

Summary

By riding with ABC Taxis, you can rest assured that the utmost care has been taken to ensure efficiency and comfort. We care not only about customer satisfaction, but we are also committed to doing our part to reduce non-renewable energy consumption, harmful emissions, and even noise pollution thanks to our expertly selected fleet of eco-cars.

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A Brief History of British Taxis

When most people think about England, certain images like the Big Ben, the queen, red phone booths, double-decker buses, and black cabs will undoubtedly spring to mind. The taxi is as much a British phenomenon as afternoon tea or Sunday roast, having driven people from point A to point B since the 17th century. 

Millions of people rely on taxis to get around, but where did they come from? Join us on a ride through history as we uncover the complete journey of the taxicab in London. 

Beginnings: The Original Hackney Coach 

The first taxi was the simple horse-drawn carriage known as a Hackney Coach. (Of course, Hackney was the area of London notorious for its stables.) The concept was born during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, when wealthy Londoners struggled to keep up with the costs of maintaining horses, coaches, and drivers, and began to capitalise on their investments by making their coaches available for hire by lesser members of the gentry.

 

sketch of 19th century hackney carriage with horse and driver
Depiction of an original four-wheeled Hackney Carriage, circa 19th century. 

The First Taxi Rank

In 1625, there were around 20 Hackney Coaches for hire, operating largely out of inns and hotels. By 1634, a wealthy Londoner by the name of Captain John Bailey came up with a new, more systematic idea which seems so familiar to us now: the taxi rank. 

Bailey owned four Hackney carriages, which operated from the Maypole Inn, and charged set tariffs for travel to different areas of London. He began a system for his cabs, making drivers follow certain rules and regulations, and decorating the carriages in eye-catching designs for recognition from customers. This is arguably when taxicabs transformed from a local phenomenon to a much more commercially-minded business. 

Dropping Wheels: A New Design

Hackney carriages remained pretty much identical to how they were first developed for about two centuries, until they saw a significant transformation in 1823. A new, faster carriage with only two wheels arrived from France. Its name came along too, with the French word cabriolet quickly evolving into our still commonly used ‘cab’ and ‘cabbie’. 

The French model was adopted in England, most prominently influencing Joseph Aloysius Hansom of York to design and patent the notorious two-wheeled Hansom Cab. The Hansom Cab rapidly gained popularity and began to replace the Hackney Carriage, offering more stability and speed than its predecessor. They could be drawn by one horse alone, improving cost-effectiveness. Another major innovation in the taxi business around this time was the introduction of taximeters, which used mechanical clockwork to measure fares according to distance. 

Hansom taxi Cab with horse and driver
A Hansom Cab design, via London Historians’ Blog

The Hansom cab also offered far more convenience for passengers, with a more protective cab, folding wooden doors to protect passengers from the elements, a roof hatch for communicating with and paying the driver, and a driver’s lever allowing him to open the doors for passengers. Hansom Cabs were very successful and continued to operate in London as well as other cities in the British Empire until the introduction of motor vehicles in the early 1900s. 

Premature Futurism: The First Electric Cab 

The Bersey, named after Walter C Bersey, was built in 1897 by the London Electrical Cab Company. It was the first attempt at commercialising electric taxis in the UK. Bersey cabs used traction batteries which were suspended from springs under the vehicle, and could travel up to 12mph. It weighed about 2 tonnes and could cover about 30 miles on a single full charge. 

black and yellow original Bersey cab in museum exhibit
A Bersey Cab in the Science Museum, London

Unfortunately, like most prototypes, the cabs were overly expensive, heavy, and unreliable, leading to several road accidents. The car was known as the ‘Hummingbird’ for the noise it made, but the name was not around for long. The vehicle quickly fell out of favour with taxi drivers and customers, and was abandoned entirely by 1900. Interestingly, electric cabs did not return to London’s streets until last decade (over a century later). 

The Introduction of Motors

In 1903, London cabs began to use combustion engines, which were far more reliable than their electric predecessors. The first examples of engine-powered cabs to appear in London included the prominent French Prunel, as well as British models called the Rational, Simplex, and Herald. 

In WWI, production of taxis came to a standstill while manufacturers switched to military production for the war effort. It was the 1920’s before London taxis were developed further and new cab designs appeared on the streets. There have been many variations and innovations of the London taxi, but the 1948 Austin FX3 is considered to have inspired the distinct style of current cabs. 

1955 Austin FX3-model black cab on road
A 1955 Austin FX3, via Volo Auto Museum

Although the Austin FX3 had many rivals, it dominated the streets of London, and so did its new and improved 1958 successor, the FX4. By 1997, London Taxis International developed the TX1 model, followed by the TX2 in 2002. These models saw significantly improved interiors, allowing for far more passenger comfort as well as additions like digital screens. The latest variant, the TX4, will be the last of engine-powered London cabs. 

Back To Electric

With increasing concern surrounding fossil fuels and emissions, and increasing pressure to innovate, the electric London taxi is making a big comeback. Zero-emissions is the new standard, and taxi manufacturers are keeping up with electric models like the LEVC TX and the Ecotive Metrocab.

LEVC TX electric black cab in London
The LEVC TX electric London taxi, via Auto Express

More and more vehicles use electric energy rather than petrol around the country and the world, and this includes black cabs as well as taxis. Hopefully, passengers, drivers, and fleet owners alike will continue to drive innovation in more eco-friendly, sustainable transportation solutions. At ABC Taxis Norwich, for example, we are committed to doing our part to make a change thanks to our up-to-date fleet of eco-cars. 

Thank you for joining us on a journey through the ages, all the way back to the Elizabethan era when the first Hackney carriages were born, to the electric cars of the future. Happy cabbing!

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Things to Do in Norfolk This Winter

With the days getting lighter and many sunny winter days ahead, it’s a great time to get out of the house. Despite the cold, there are many things to do in Norfolk on your own, as a couple, or with your whole family. Here are some of our suggestions for the best activities in Norfolk to get you out of the house this winter. 

Go for a walk on the coast 

Happisburgh Beach via UK Beach Guide

Long walks on the beach are a Norfolk classic, whether you’re walking the dog, having a romantic date, or enjoying a day of family fun. Put on some layers and get refreshed on one of the many beautiful beaches on the Norfolk coast. Afterwards, why not enjoy a comforting mug of hot chocolate at a cafe, or a warming lunch by the fire at a pub nearby? Some of our favourite lesser-known beaches include Overstrand with its green cliffs, Happisburgh with its immense historical value, and Brancaster for its dog-friendly expanse. 

Watch the birds rise with the sun

Snettisham bird spectacular via The Royal Photographic Society

We highly recommend getting up early to go see the sunrise on the coast. Not only that, but because North and West Norfolk house a fantastic variety of migratory birds in the winter, you’ll see them rise too as they leave their overnight roosts! A great place to watch this spectacle is Snettisham Nature Reserve, where masses of waterfowl gather, and peregrines and hen harriers hunt. Goldeneyes also gather here, beginning to display in preparation for spring. 

Visit Cromer Pier

Cromer’s heritage seaside pier, opened in 1901, is a huge local landmark. At the end of the pier, you will find The Pavilion Theatre, which is a much-loved seaside attraction and one of only five end-of-pier theatres in the UK. The theatre hosts a wide variety of entertainment throughout the year, including the Cromer Pier Show. Furthermore, the pier has a working RNLI Lifeboat station, a cafe, and a bar, making it a great place for a day out, with plenty to see. 

Go tropical at Urban Jungle Plant Nursery and Cafe

The cake counter among tropical plants at Urban Jungle, via EDP

Why not escape to a tropical place while it’s cold outside? If you like tropical plants, delicious food, and unusual settings, you must visit Urban Jungle in Old Costessey. Not only can you stroll around looking at their incredible selection of indoor and outdoor plants before sitting down for tea and some cake, but they also organise events such as terrarium, macrame, floral, wreath, and aquascaping workshops. There’s something for everyone at this indoor tropical paradise, so make sure to check it out! 

Explore Felbrigg Hall and its enormous estate

A glimpse of the interior of Felbrigg Hall, via National Trust

The 17th century hall at Blickling was owned by the Boleyn family, and it is likely that Anne spent a portion of her early years here, giving it immense historic interest. Managed by the National Trust, the property is also known for its beautiful, original Jacobean architecture and fine Georgian interior. The Hall also boasts a walled garden, orangerie, cafe, shop, and 800 acres of land for you to explore. 

Take a ride on the North Norfolk Railway

A view of the North Norfolk Railway, via The Globe Inn in Wells-next-the-Sea

Starting in Sheringham, a real steam train will take you on a journey to see the beautiful landscapes and coastlines of North Norfolk! William Marriott built the railway in 1887, and it ran until 1924. The timetable is somewhat limited in winter, but on the plus side there are special events and activities! 

We hope we have given you some good ideas for what to do in Norfolk for the remainder of the wintertime. Wrap up warmly and go enjoy the sun and fresh air, historical landmarks, and family activities! There is plenty to do out there if you are looking. 

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Top Tips for Passing Your Driving Test

Passing your driving test is an important rite of passage in any young person’s life. With a single step, you can unlock a new level of freedom that will make you feel like a proper adult. Passing one test could allow you to go anywhere, with reasonable limits of course, much more conveniently than Britain’s famously unreliable public transport system. It’s okay to be nervous! This is an important thing that you’ve spent countless hours practising for. But, if you feel like you still need advice, here are some top tips for passing your driving test.

1. Sleep

Driving requires focus and concentration, so it’s important to get a good night’s sleep! You’ll already know from your lessons that driving is tiring. It’s easy to feel completely drained after a two-hour driving lesson, and your test will inevitably be a little more intense. Make sure that you have a relaxing evening the night before your test, and go to bed early.

Even better, make sure you’re well-fed on the day of your test, whether it be after breakfast or after lunch. Good food will give you the energy you need to keep up the level of concentration required to drive effectively.

2. Revise Theory

You might have completed your theory test months before you take your practical, so it never hurts to brush up on your theory! You’ll need to be able to recognise and react to road signs, among other things, during your test, so it’s important to keep yourself familiar with them.

3. Use a familiar car

You might already have a car that you’ve been able to do hours of practice in. If so, use it! Alternatively, use your instructor’s car. Nowadays you will be tested on your ability to perform actions such as turning on and off lights and other functions of the car while driving, so knowing where all the knobs and switches are will be a serious help to you passing this part of the test. Even more importantly, familiarity with the car’s clutch biting point will help you avoid excessive stalling, and help you change gear smoothly.

4. Practise

Make sure you’ve had the number of lessons you need before you take your test. Thankfully, most driving instructors will be proactive on this front, and more than able to advise you when you should take your test, based on how you have been learning with them throughout the process. 

Also, be sure you’ve had as much private practise that you feel you need before you book your test. This isn’t always necessary, but it will only make you even more familiar with driving, and make your technique look more polished and practised when it comes to your test.

5. Have a lesson beforehand

Taking a lesson beforehand will ease you back into driving, eliminating those preliminary nerves that come with sitting yourself behind the wheel again. You can also practice any techniques of manoeuvres you might feel unsure about with your instructor, so you can enter your test feeling confident about your weaker areas. 

6. Take your instructor

It’s not compulsory to take anyone with you, but you can bring your instructor if you want! Some might feel that this adds an extra layer of pressure that they don’t want. This is fine! But, if you don’t mind having them there, taking your instructor along with you can be helpful. They can’t give you any advice during the test, but if you were to fail, it will be helpful to have someone there who is familiar with you and how you drive, so you can have an extra perspective on where you went wrong.

7. Know the test route

Ensure that you’re familiar with the test route before you take your test. Routes vary wildly depending on where you are in the country, and it’s certainly true that some areas of the country have routes that are much easier to pass than others. You could certainly pick a good place in the country to do your test, but this isn’t a viable option for most, and it’s best to simply stick with where you’ve been learning. After all, picking the easier option won’t necessarily make you a better driver in the long run!

8. Avoid common mistakes

There’s a set of common mistakes that many make on their test that you should try to avoid. Hopefully, your instructor will have familiarised you with much of this during your lessons. Keeping your speed appropriate, not just in terms of the speed limit, but also your speed when approaching roundabouts, junctions, or performing manoeuvres is one. 

Another is making the correct observations. Check your mirrors regularly, and make it obvious that you are doing so. Your test supervisor will be paying attention to ensure you’re doing this, but it doesn’t hurt to make it as clear as possible that you’re doing it!

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Roundabouts: A Guide For Learner Drivers

For many learner drivers, roundabouts can be a gauntlet. They often have fast-moving traffic and multiple lanes can increase the confusion even further. For nervous learners, roundabouts are a key place where it’s easy to get panicked and make bad decisions. There are three key areas to focus on here: your approach, what to do when you’re on the roundabout, and leaving the roundabout. For learner drivers, here’s a quick guide to roundabouts.

What Are Roundabouts?

A roundabout is a circular intersection allowing traffic to flow in one direction around a central island. Anyone living in the UK who has been in the car with their parents, or travelled on a bus or in a taxi, will have been familiar with these for most of their lives. However, in other places throughout the world, such as the US, roundabouts are far rarer. So, anyone living in the UK having moved here from abroad may find roundabouts highly confusing at first. Even learners who are familiar with roundabouts can find them baffling at first. Don’t worry, this is normal! Hopefully, the following tips will be of use to you.

Approaching the Roundabout

Remember your checks. Check your interior mirror first, then whichever mirror corresponds to the way you’re going. Left mirror if you’re turning left, right mirror if you’re turning right, and neither if you’re going straight ahead. Remember to signal which way you’re going, or not at all if you’re going straight ahead. 

Is the roundabout open or closed? An open roundabout is one where you can clearly see the roundabout you’re approaching. These are easier roundabouts to approach as they allow you to clearly assess the traffic conditions and whether you will need to stop at the roundabout, or whether you can continue onto it smoothly. 

Closed roundabouts, by contrast, are ones where your view of the roundabout is obscured until you make your final approach, possibly by high walls or fences. These require more caution on the approach, as you cannot be sure of the traffic conditions.

When approaching, timing is everything. On the approach, you need to consider when to break, as well as when to engage the clutch in order to change gear. The timing for this can be tricky, and getting the timing right is often the key to handling roundabouts confidently. 

If you break too early, you will come into the roundabout slowly, and this will hold up any traffic behind you. Approach too fast, and you risk stopping too late and partially entering the roundabout, which poses a danger to you and other road users. 

Similarly, learning when to engage the clutch and change to whichever gear is necessary will help you feel more confident on the approach and will enable you to respond more effectively to the traffic conditions.

Check your gear. Roundabouts are best handled in second gear, however, if you need to stop at the intersection you must be prepared to switch to first gear promptly.

Ensure you’re positioned in the correct lane. Road signs are your friend here – they will tell you which lane you need to be in relative to which exit you’re taking.

Also, make sure your car is pointed the way you’re going. If you’re turning left, point yourself slightly to the left as you pull up. If you’re turning right, point yourself to the right. This is just like an average junction.

Constantly and briskly check to the right on the approach. This will help you know if you need to give way. Alternate this with looking where you are going.

On the Roundabout

Maintain proper speed. It’s important to match your speed with the speed of other drivers once you’re on the roundabout. Not doing so could cause an accident, as roundabouts are a fast-moving, constant stream of traffic. 

You will often need to switch up a gear whilst on the roundabout. Practice this to ensure you can do it confidently.

Keep an eye on your positioning. Keep left if you’re turning left, and ensure you’re not veering too far to the right when turning right. Keeping an eye on the edge of the central island is a good way to do this, as well as making sure to keep your hand steady on the wheel.

Leaving the Roundabout

Speed up. It’s beneficial to give yourself an extra boost of speed when leaving a roundabout. Don’t exceed the speed limit, but give the accelerator a little bit extra when you’re moving off. This is especially important if you’re leaving the roundabout onto a road with a higher speed limit, as other drivers will also be looking to speed up.

Final checks. Don’t forget your final mirror check as you move off the roundabout, and be especially careful if exiting requires you to transition across lanes. Other drivers may be looking to overtake you at this point, so keeping an eye on your right-hand blind spot will allow you to avoid any possible accidents.

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Top Tips for Brand New Taxi Drivers

Life as an ABC taxi driver is an open door to new experiences. You’ll get to see every inch of Norwich as you drive people to where they want to go. You will be an integral part of peoples’ journeys to and from their destinations, and whether or not they arrive at their destinations promptly, and satisfied with their journeys. However, the job you’re taking on is also not without risk. While most members of the public are regular, everyday people looking to get from one location to another, it’s also without doubt that some will attempt to exploit, rob or harm you. Here are some top tips for brand new drivers to ensure that you’re providing the best service you possibly can, whilst also remaining as safe as you possibly can.

Know Your Area

One of the keys to providing an excellent taxi service is to know the area in which you operate like the back of your hand. While the days of taxi drivers needing this knowledge in the most literal sense are gone, your sat nav won’t always be reliable or accurate, and your passengers still want to arrive at their destinations, rather than a five-minute walk away. Studying the area you’re covering will provide you with an instant vault of knowledge to access that will vastly improve your service, allowing you to pick the best routes that will allow your passengers to reach their destinations in the most timely possible manner.

Kick the Tyre

Make sure to check your vehicle inside and out before you start your shift. Hopping into the driver’s seat and taking off like a rocket is a surefire way to burden yourself with equipment failures and car trouble along the way, wasting time that could be better spent ferrying potential passengers. Taxis are constantly in use and in service, so the potential for failures is much higher than your regular old car. In order to provide the best possible service, perform a quick roster of checks every time you start a shift.

Be Alert

While driving a taxi might feel exactly the same as driving your own car, you’re providing a service to others. Careful driving is even more essential in your taxi than it is when you’re off the clock. Remain alert at all times to goings-on on the road and on the pavement so that you and your passengers are as safe as you can possibly be.

Keep it Clean

No one wants to step into a taxi and be assaulted by unwelcome smells and dirt. While you might let your personal car fill up with empty takeaway bags, coffee cups and empty packets, your taxi should be a haven of cleanliness to ensure that your passengers have the most pleasant possible experience. And that goes for cleaning up their mess too. Taxi driving isn’t all sunshine and roses, and sometimes grubby passengers will leave their mess for you to clean up. Keeping on top of this is a chore, but a necessary one for the comfort of your passengers and for the reputations of you and ABC.

Cash Bags and Receipt Pads

While ABC is a thoroughly modern company, with its fleet of electric cars and digital payment system, there are many who still carry cash on them, and they’ll want to use it in your taxi. Keeping bags of cash and change is a necessity for any driver, and keeping them well-organised is even better. This will allow you to deliver change to your passengers as quickly and efficiently as possible, saving dead time between journeys and increasing your efficiency.

Don’t Flash the Cash

Another undeniable factor in taxi driving is your susceptibility to crime. Taxi drivers operate at all hours of the day and night, and while most people are perfectly kind, courteous and pleasant, there’s a chance you’ll run into some unsavoury characters. Those looking to rob taxis are almost always looking for cash. They know there’s a good chance you have it on you. This is another reason why it’s so necessary to keep your cash well organised; it allows you to conceal it more effectively. It’s best not to discuss how much cash you may or may not have on you with any passenger, they might be sizing you up to see if they can attempt a robbery.

Study Emergency Procedures

In the event of any emergency during your shift, it’s vital to be aware of safety procedures. These procedures are there to help you deal with any emergency you might encounter, and following them is the best way to resolve any issue quickly and effectively. Being able to recall these procedures accurately and implement them competently is the mark of an excellent taxi driver. It’s not just about commitment to the daily rigors of the job, it’s knowing exactly what to do in an emergency, and keeping a cool head and a steady hand whilst doing so.

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Why Your Local Taxi Company Is Better Than Uber

Over the past few years in major cities all over the world, there has been a lot of noise about the influx of ridesharing companies such as Uber and Lyft taking business away from long-running local taxi firms. While Norwich is probably too small of a city to ever have to deal with this issue, it has been big news in places like London, Manchester and Birmingham, to name but a few. The appeal of the app-based rideshare companies is easy to see: open an app, press a button and a few minutes later a car turns up and gets you to where you want to go much cheaper than if you were to call a cab. That’s how it’s supposed to go on paper, anyway. Unsurprisingly, here at ABC, we feel that when it comes to the competition between traditional cabs and using an app, a traditional cab wins every time. Not convinced? Read on to hear our reasons why, and hopefully you’ll have a change of heart!

You get some actual human to human contact

While it seems that technology nowadays is specifically geared towards limiting human contact when carrying out everyday tasks, the fact that traditional taxi companies have someone, often an office, you can call with any issues is a huge plus. Imagine you lose a valuable item in an Uber and don’t realise until a couple of hours later, you have to rely on the driver answering a call from an unknown number in order to get it back if it hasn’t already been picked up by another customer and pocketed! Having a reliable point of contact for when something goes wrong provides much more peace of mind, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar city, so think twice before ordering that Uber!

You get to take advantage of cab drivers encyclopaedic knowledge

It’s a well-known fact that cab drivers in London have to memorise every road within a 6-mile radius of the centre of London and be able to recall from memory the fastest way to get from A to B, and that’s before they even get a license! Local cab drivers are more often than not from the area, so if you need to get somewhere fast, there’s nobody better to take you. 

You can be assured of your safety

Licensed cab drivers have a duty of care towards their passengers, and it is part of their job to make sure that they do everything in their power to ensure you get to your destination safely. Rideshare companies do not have the same obligations to license their drivers, or the same level of scrutinisation when it comes to hiring. So if you’re in a city that you’re unfamiliar with, the best step you can take to ensure your safety is to use a license cab provider based in the area. While 99% of drivers for app-based rideshare companies will work under the same duty of care to their passengers as a licensed cab driver, a small minority may not, and it’s better to be safe than sorry! 

You can budget more effectively using a taxi

Most taxi providers will be able to tell you exactly how much the fare will be in advance, unlike when you use an app. Furthermore, local taxi companies very rarely, if ever, hike their rates based on how much demand there is on their service like the apps do. This means that you’ll avoid opening your app and staring in horror at the fact that prices have been quadrupled because it’s Saturday at 11 pm and everyone’s wanting to go to town. 

More availability of larger vehicles

While the availability of standard cars on apps like Uber and Lyft will often mean you have a very small wait, often only 3-5 minutes, when it comes to trying to transport more people you’ll often be left high and dry. Local taxi companies exist in order to provide a great service to their clients, and as such, they will often have a fleet of larger vehicles for groups of up to 8 people to make sure everyone gets to the party on time and together! 

We hope we’ve convinced you to think twice next time you go to open that app and book your rideshare. Local taxi companies thrive on the patronage of their valued customers, so if you can get a local cab, do it and enjoy the fact that, in the process, you’re supporting a local business that employs local people. Win!

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COVID-19 UPDATE

Open for business & offering 20% off to all NHS staff & other frontline workers.

We are still open for business and working hard to support our local community. The health and safety of our customers and drivers is our top priority and we are doing everything we can to achieve this. Upon entering the vehicles, please allow our drivers to guide you through the safest ways to avoid contact. This may be by seating you in the rear of the vehicle or paying via card through either our SMS system or mobile App. Please note, any lost property left during this time will be held for 72 hours and customers can arrange for return delivery on 01603 666333. Any items not collected in this window will be placed in storage and available for collection when our offices re-open. We would like to thank all of our customers past and present for their fantastic support during this difficult time. We ensure you all that we will be here with you every step of the way.