Addison Lee has announced that it is writing to all its drivers instructing them not to use London bus lanes pending its application for judicial review.
Two weeks ago BikeBiz.com was the first media source to release the news that Addison Lee’s chairman had written to the company’s drivers encouraging them to break the law and drive in London’s bus lanes. This led to a huge outcry from cyclists, and black cab taxi drivers.
John Griffin, chairman of Addison Lee, said: “Addison Lee remains totally opposed to the current bus lane legislation, which is both unfair and discriminatory. However, now we have achieved our goals of bringing forward the judicial review and bringing the issue to public debate, we feel we have made our point.”
Since the company advised drivers it would indemnify them against fines for entering bus lanes, around 800 tickets have been issued. None of the fines have to be paid until the conclusion of the judicial review, and should Addison Lee succeed against Transport for London it’s possible the fines will be declared null and void.
Griffin said: "We are confident that we will succeed in overturning this legislation so that we can compete on fair terms with the black cabs. In the circumstances and in the spirit of cooperation, I have recommended to my drivers that they stay out of the bus lanes until our case has been heard.”
Cyclists had teamed up with black cab taxi drivers to protest at the entry of Addison Lee minicabs in bus lanes.
Griffin had also enraged cyclists with his comments that they should pay (non-existent) ‘road tax’ to use roads.
BikeBiz executive editor Carlton Reid visited Addison Lee on Monday and handed Griffin an iPayRoadTax jersey. During a one and a half hour meeting with Addison Lee PR mananger Alistair Laycock, a promise was made for Addison Lee to create a cycle awareness course for its drivers.