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You can often see them on scooters with a clipboard and map attached driving around the streets of London learning there way. When they have learnt all they need to know they must sit an examination to test this knowledge and attend a series of interviews known as appearances and answer questions on routes and landmarks. Examples of the type of questions would be to list all the theatres on Shaftsbury Avenue as you would pass them and the Streets and traffic signals you would pass along the way. Another would be to give the shortest route between two points in the city and then take into account traffic during the rush hours and when congestion occurs suggest alternative routes to avoid it where possible.

Its also a fact that in learning the knowledge a persons brain grows so when you next get in a cab and you think the drivers a bit of a know it all he just might !
But whatever you do always use a Licensed Private Hire car or Hackney Carriage Taxi your be in safe hands, at The Taxi Directory that's all we list!

http://www.thetaxidirectory.co.uk/5.html

'The Knowledge’ An Article From British Icons

London taxi drivers are legendary for their encyclopedic grasp of the country's capital city and ‘the Knowledge’ - the assessment all wannabe London cabbies have to pass with flying colours - is notorious for being a mind-bendingly difficult slog. It can take around three to four years of hard training to pass, and according to Malcolm Linskey, manager of London taxi school Knowledge Point, three-quarters of those who embark on the course drop out.

Introduced by Sir Richard Mayne in 1851, ‘the Knowledge’ came about after customers complained that drivers didn’t know where they were going.

In addition to having quick-fire knowledge of some 25,000 streets within six miles of Charing Cross Station, London cabbies also have to know the capital’s notable landmarks and places of interest, as well as the location of London’s hospitals, police stations, courts, government buildings, train and underground stations and main parks.

In order to qualify for ‘the Knowledge’, applicants must have a clean driving licence, be over 21 years of age, and have no criminal record. The next step is to pass a written test; which qualifies them to make an 'appearance'.
As part of their training, hopeful cabbies follow need-to-know routes around London on a moped, identifying them as they go using the map holder fixed to the front of the bike, this then earns them the name knowledge boys (or girls).

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