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Story of the London taxis | UK news
Nevertheless, they were pleased when I said that they were my first and that - as is the case with the Kabbie traditions - the journey was free wherever they wanted to go. In October 2008, when I began to learn the knowledge of London, the auditor said it was the most difficult thing we would ever do.
While there are no dropouts, each year Transport for London (TFL) usually licences between a fourth and a third of the number of candidates, so we can say for sure that most who begin the knowledge never do. A typical "knowledge boy" (or sometimes a girl) will spend three or four years driving about 20,000 mph within a six-mile radius of Charing Cross, on a motorbike in rainy, icy winds or roadblocks.
Centuries of working sessions are devoted to sketching routes on laminate street plans and finding the most straightforward way from hotels to train stations, from restaurants to offices, from monuments to squares. It' s a legend - ask any taxi driver and see how he twitches. John Mason - director of the taxi and rental agency at Deutsche Telekom - says that in the "old days" the inspectors would be playing a game of placing the stool in the exam room in the opposite sense and giving the students who tried to turn it over an automated failure.
" Mr Dean Warrington heads the WizAnn Knowledge Centre which I visited (there are several London based colleges not linked to TfL) and in 1996 received his Dutch driving license, which allows riders to work in Greater London. "Today, knowledge tries to be "as effective, honest and clear as possible," says Mason.
The Austin FX4 was launched in 1958, upgraded and renamed in 1987, and will virtually vanish from the roads of the UK capitol in the new year, thanks to the London mayor's aviation goals for ensuring that cars more than 15 years old are no longer registered.
The fairway has been extended to a few and will stay a rarity for a few month, but it has come to the end of the street. Mercedes-Benz (already licensed) and Nissan (scheduled for 2013) offer fuel-efficient alternative fuels in person- carrier styling that address the cost-conscious drivers. These are troubling periods for those of us who value what the London taxi looks like, although Mason can assure me that Mason advises others with whom to work in the hopes of achieving an unmistakable London counterpart.
It won't be that way for long - the number of knowledge boys from Bangladesh and northern Africa is soaring. According to TfL's sales last year were 35% non-white, so you can count on a genuine shift over the next few years compared to the London taxi driver.
If we have machinery, why do we need knowledge at all? The London taxi company means that you can call a taxi on the road, and before even the taxi rider has really grasped where the end point is, he has left and is on his way in the right directions.
"I have no doubts that if there were no knowledge requirements in London today, there would be a huge effect on coach dependability, travel time and everything else. "It can also be our best friends, in the shape of new portable applications like Hailo, which make it possible to rent a rider without being seen by anyone with a smart phone.
is the embodiment of the taxi rider of the twenty-first hundred years. Specially developed for the fare dodger, "it doesn't say here on the right, there on the left," but just puts a line on a card to show you the general heading when you get bogged down. No cab fare can ever be expected to know everything.
Lionel May, a fairway rider, says to me, "You never stop learning," and he turns 80 in January. Is he gonna be sorry to put his fairway back in the garages? "Everyone I talk to about the fairway is raving about his super-reliable motor, which can drive well over 500,000 mph without any problem.
When Warrington remembers his "little fairway", he gets foggy... I loved how it seemed, felt me... they were nice to see. "This was a big part of the appeal for some of us Knowledge Boys - not just the automobile, but the whole nice archean business first licenced by Oliver Cromwell, peculiarities and so on.
Rider (we are known in the shops as "butter boys" because we take freshly baked bread and Butter from the mouth of mainstream driving families) Andrew Baker praises this: "Says me that when he went to London to graduate, it was really an excuse to come to the town where he always wanted to be, and that it was "romance" that drew him to knowledge and left the graduation behind.
I saw in my passion for London and in a professional rutting season the chance to become a working part of this magic city. Crossley's great-great-grandfather was a coach rider before he came to the Hansom cab, and the company has been in his own right ever since. Shortly before retiring, but with his boy in the offi ce and on the knowledge, Crossley is carefully upbeat.
"He says that there are three things that have distinguished us from renting out privately: a special car, the Wendekreis [London taxis, as the legends say, switch on one sixtieth - or 25ft] and knowledge. "Well, the specially constructed car is in danger, and 65,000 privately owned rental cars have shown that you can manage without the tropic if you really have to, but it is "the knowledge that allows us to rent on the road".
The 54 years of the classical taxi as an iconic figure may seem like a good inning, but cabs have been in one shape or another in London for well over 300 years. "Let us remain the proud taxi driver of the earth - why not?