The unease that continues to blight the taxi trade at Heathrow has worsened over recent week, and it looks as though 2013 will be a watershed year for its taxi drivers. The rights of taxi drivers are being eroded bit by bit and recent action by some has brought matters to a head.
Eddie Symes, the chairman of Heathrow Airport Taxi Drivers United (HATDU), has, like so many others, had enough of the interference of taxi passengers that takes place on the taxi information desks in each of the airport’s terminals. He decided to do something about this and so he, along with another HATDU committee member, has embarked on a bit of a crusade that involves standing by the taxi information desk on terminal one and monitoring what goes on. When taxi passengers approach the desks he politely asks them if they need a taxi. If they say yes, he directs them to the taxi rank before they get to the taxi information desk.
On the first day of this action several hundred passengers were directed towards the taxi rank and away from the information desk, which conducts business on behalf of the private company, Heathrow Airport Licensed Taxis Society (HALTS). This led to an increase in the number of taxis moving through the taxi feeder park and left staff on the desk with little else to do but twiddle thumbs and phoning “the boss” to tell him what was happening.
Police later arrived and asked Eddie what he was doing and after listening to what he had to say, decided to observe proceedings for an hour or so. They noticed that nothing illegal was taking place and so decided to leave the area.This was a good day for ordinary taxi drivers.
More to follow.