Azeem Hanif, chairman of the United Private Hire Drivers (Nottingham Branch) trade union

The increase in the number of private hire taxi drivers illegally touting for trade in the city centre is due to the fact that there are too many working there, according to the union which represents taxi drivers.

The trade union, United Private Hire Drivers (Nottingham Branch), has claimed that drivers are plying for hire in the city centre due to the over concentration of taxis.

Private hire driver Azeem Hanif, 47, from Basford, is the chairman of the trade union. He told the Nottingham Post: “There are too many vehicles and too much competition. A driver gets to a point where he has to ply for hire to make money.

“If we had 500 drivers, that is probably enough, but if it is 5,000 in the same location then there is not enough work.

“If we put a cap on the number then we have control over the number of drivers we have and the root cause will be taken away.

“The reason I don’t do it (ply for hire) is because it is against the terms and conditions of my licence and it is ethically and morally wrong.”