TAXI fares could be set for a hike of more than 10 per cent in North Ayrshire, with the cost of living crisis increasing fuel costs for cabbies.

The licensing committee at North Ayrshire Council recently met drivers to discuss the annual review of fares.

The new proposals agreed last Wednesday would see the tariffs going up from £3.20 for the first three-quarters of a mile up until midnight to £3.50, and from £3.50 for the first three-quarters of a mile to £4 after midnight.

Councillor Eleanor Collier, the licensing committee’s chair, said: “This [the proposed increases] gives them a more suitable recompense for their efforts in the nighttime.

“The proposal will now go out for public consultation and come back to the committee in October.”

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Most drivers spoken to by the licensing committee supported a rise.

Robert Chalmers said there needed to be a rise and added: “When, if not now?”

Gerry Taylor said there had to be a rise ASAP as the cost of everything had gone up.

Hugh O’Neill said there had to be an increase as in East Ayrshire.

William Taylor claimed there had been a 20 per cent increase in fuel cost in a year.

The proposals now go to a public consultation via the North Ayrshire Council website, giving taxi drivers the chance to respond further.