Standstill in Bolton town centre as taxi drivers protest Clean Air Zone charges

Bolton town centre comes to standstill as Credit: ITV News

Dozens of private hire and taxi drivers in Bolton are staging a protest against controversial 'Clean Air Zone' charges (CAZ) in Greater Manchester.

The plans, which are set to come into force on 30 May 2022, would see commercial and passenger vehicles deemed 'most polluting'.

They will have to pay a daily charge - ranging from £7.50 to £60 for larger vehicles - to travel in the zone, in a bid to cut pollution.

Credit: ITV News

The town centre came to a standstill as the protest, organised by Bolton Taxi Union and Bolton Private Hire Association, took place.

The proposed plans will see taxis and private hire vehicles (PVH) that do not meet emissions standards forced to pay a daily charge of £7.50 to drive in the Clean Air Zone.

Cars licensed outside Greater Manchester, and vehicles licensed in Greater Manchester after 3 December 2020, will have to pay the charge everyday from 30 May 2022.

Those licensed in Greater Manchester before or on 3 December 2020 will have to pay the charge from 1 June 2023.

Taxis and private cars have gathered in Bolton to protest the clean air zone charges. Credit: ITV News

The CAZ will cover all 10 boroughs of Greater Manchester - Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford and Wigan.

The plans are being reviewed, after a huge backlash from businesses, and thousands of people signed a petition calling for it to be scrapped.