Changing perceptions

London’s licensed taxi trade is the most heavily-regulated in the world and sets the gold standard among taxi services in London, but has often been portrayed as behind the times in the public debate. We highlighted their superior standards to political and media stakeholders to change this perception.

Context 

The LTDA represents almost half of the 22,500 active black cab drivers in London. In the build-up to the 2016 London Mayoral election, Newington was tasked with highlighting the superiority of the heavily-regulated black cab trade in service and quality compared to the minimally-regulated minicab industry, and seek favourable political and regulatory support for licensed taxis.

Strategy 

With a focus on London, Newington used a range of tactics to promote the superior standards of the trade to diverse audiences: building up a network of political advocates across central and local government, showcasing the positives of the trade throughout the media and emphasising black cabs’ essential contribution to London through partnerships with wider, well-established stakeholders.

Change 

The positive image of the trade was successfully translated into political support: we secured over 20 one-to-one meetings between MPs and the LTDA, a commitment from the relevant Government Minister to meet with the LTDA on a regular basis and the introduction of a Ten Minute Rule Bill on standards in the private hire market. This profile raising helped ensure positive manifesto commitments from all of the principal London mayoral candidates.

Facts 
  • Ran the ‘Better for London’ campaign, which accentuated the positives of the trade in terms of accessibility, environmental and safety commitments.
  • Organised the most-well attended Parliamentary Lobby in recent years, which saw over 50 MPs and their offices directed lobbied by their LTDA member constituents.