Taxi fares in parts of Reading and Newbury have risen by eight per cent.

Rising fuel costs were behind West Berkshire Council’s decision to approve the increase, which remains below inflation.

The maximum cost of a two mile journey was made 60p more expensive on July 29, impacting fares in Calcot, parts of Tilehurst, Theale, Newbury and Thatcham.

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“The taxi trade provide an invaluable service including our most vulnerable residents. We need to ensure that a balance is struck between ensuring that the taxi business remains economically viable in light of increasing costs while protecting the public from excessive fares, and I feel that the consultation has achieved that balance,” said Councillor Tom Marino.

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A consultation was held between July 14 and 18 after fuel prices spiralled 35 per cent.

Two mile journeys were capped at £7.60 in November 2021, but fuel costs forced the council to hold their annual consultation earlier than planned. 

Petrol cost around £1.47 a litre and diesel £1.50 per litre when fees were agreed last year, but rates have risen to around £1.90 a litre for petrol and around £2.00 per litre for diesel.

The fares do not apply to private hire vehicles which can only be pre-booked and are not allowed to pick up passengers from ranks, nor can they be hailed in the street.