Taxi drivers in North Ayrshire could be allowed to wear shorts all-year round as a result of a new dress code.

Proposals from the North Ayrshire Licensing Board suggest that the licence holder must conduct themselves in a proper and civil manner and be clean and tidy.

In the first overhaul of the dress code since 2000, the board suggests that drivers should not wear a hat, cap, baseball-style cap, beanie hat or any other headgear while driving.

They recommend trousers should be full length, dress style. Tracksuit trousers would not be considered acceptable.

Polo shirts, it is proposed, must be one colour and have a collar with no printing or lettering except a small manufacturer’s logo – though a company name or logo could be allowed on the shirt. 

T-shirts with a round neckline, football attire or club colours would not be acceptable.

Dress shorts may be worn at any time of year, provided they have belt hoops and are one colour.

Shorts or jeans are not allowed in the current proposals.

Three-quarter length shorts would not be permitted under the proposal, and highly patterned or advertising printing is not acceptable.

There may be a small manufacturer’s logo. Gym or beach shorts would not be permitted. 

Any tie should be a clip-on style for the driver’s own personal safety.

Jumpers,  either crew or V-neck, would be permitted, provided they are not highly patterned and may have a small manufacturer’s logo or taxi firm details.

Hoodies would not be permitted, and footwear may be either shoes or training shoes. Sandals and flip flops would not be appropriate.

Departure from any of these requirements is allowed only where a particular type of clothing is required by the traditional and customary practices of the licence holder’s particular religious, ethnic or other cultural group. 

Tory councillor Mathew McLean suggested some drivers might wear certain items on religious grounds, rather than ethnic or cultural grounds, and that should be stated in the new code.

Cllr Nairn McDonald said he would be happy if drivers wore dark jeans, and chair Eleanor Collier agreed.

The chair also suggested smart skirts could be acceptable.

The committee agreed to further discuss the policy before it is put out to consultation with the Taxi Owners’ Association organisations along with independent drivers who are not members.