Taxi quotes £55 for three mile trip during Lancaster floods

Dalton Square, Lancaster
Dalton Square, Lancaster
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A man paid £35 for a three mile journey to Lancaster following the floods and blackouts earlier this month.

Dave Physick was going on holiday in the early hours of Monday December 7.

He had pre-arranged for a taxi to pick him and his wife up from their home in Slyne and drop them in Dalton Square.

Dave, 67, said he called into the 848848 taxi office in Mary Street to check his booking the day before.

He said: “At 3am the taxi arrived and the driver said he wanted £55 from Slyne to Dalton Square as I told the driver that Denny Beck Bridge was open.

“After some negotiation we settled at £45. It took us less than 20 minutes to get to Dalton Square going over Denny Beck Bridge.

“I was charged £35 in the end.”

He arrived at Dalton Square to find no transport waiting for his three day trip to Munich, Salzburg and Innsbruck in Germany, so he and his wife walked back to Slyne with their suitcases.

Dave said: “Just as we arrived back the electric came back on and I was able to contact the holiday company. They sent a taxi to us from Preston and the driver took us all the way to Beaconsfield, near Oxford, to meet the coach coach we were supposed to get from Dalton Square.

“I was hoping to sort it out with the owner of Mary St Taxis but he was not interested because I did not have the taxi number.

“There were very few taxis out that night so it would not be difficult to trace.”

Robin Mitchell, a director at 848848 Ltd said: “We had very little information that night and drivers were having to go up to Carnforth via Galgate to get across the river.

“The driver didn’t know Denny Beck was open, so he had to go the long way.

“When the customer told him it was open he used that route, but the cost reflected the time and petrol it took for the driver to get there.”

Dave said he was in the process of contacting the taxi regulator. Lancaster City Council said anyone with complaints about Hackney Carriages or private taxis should contact 01524 582033.