ECO-friendly initiatives are bidding to drive change in reducing pollution and improving air quality across the borough.

Drivers of taxis and private hire vehicles across the borough are being encouraged to go the extra mile when it comes to going green, with changes to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council guidelines.

In April a new taxi fee structure was introduced, meaning that ultra-low emission Hackney Carriage vehicles get a licence for free.

The updated licensing scheme includes the removal of rules over the type of vehicle which can be driven, giving more choice about the makes and models of vehicles for drivers.

Cabinet member for regulatory services and the environment Councillor Hayley Eachus said: “Everyone needs to do their bit when it comes to keeping our air clean.

“We hope that these measures will make it easier for drivers of taxis and private hire vehicles to make good choices about the cars that they are driving and about how they are driving them.”

The scheme also introduces an upper age limit for licensed carriage vehicles in a bid to reduce pollution caused by older vehicles operating, mainly within the town centre.

The policy also now allows vehicles with smaller, more efficient engines, including hybrid and electric vehicles, to be licensed.

The borough council is also working to promote anti-idling messages to drivers of taxis and private hire vehicles.

New signage is being introduced at the taxi rank at Basingstoke Railway Station encouraging drivers to switch off their engines while they wait and drivers are being given anti-idling car stickers to display in their vehicles.

This new initiative forms part of the borough council’s scheme to reduce air pollution across Basingstoke and Deane.

For more information about the council’s Clean Air Basingstoke and Deane campaign, go to