TAXI standards in Barnsley which were once described as ‘horrendous’ have been dramatically improved, according to the chairman of the council’s licensing board.

Coun Charlie Wraith praised officers’ work in driving up standards, which has seen collaborations with operators and VOSA in the last year.

At the last daytime check-up operation held in May, 13 vehicles were stopped and 11 were found to be compliant, while two drivers were served with immediate suspension notices for defective lights.

However, no written warnings were issued to drivers for long-running problems such as worn tyres, according to a report.

Coun Wraith said: “It’s pleasing for us as the message is clearly getting through to both drivers and operators. We have had some horrendous reports about the state of taxis in the past but the improvements we’ve seen can only be described as tremendous.

“Everyone’s onboard with what we’re trying to do, which is boost standards and subsequently improve safety for both drivers and their passengers.”

Proactive enforcement days will continue on a quarterly basis, according to the council.

The report added: “While vehicle failure rates remain, the positive action conveys the message that operators, proprietors and drivers must begin to accept responsibility for their failures and make a change.”