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The Knowledge

The Knowledge of London is the course of study that any prospective Licensed London Taxi Driver has to undertake to qualify for his/her coveted London Taxi driver's license and badge. This can take anything from 2 years upwards depending on the candidate, and some say they amount of information that a candidates brain has to consume is the equivalent of taking a degree course.


To register to do the Knowledge a candidate must first visit The Public Carriage Office at 15 Penton Street, London where they will have to fill in an application form listing any previous criminal convictions and they then will be required to pass a medical, all being well they will then be accepted by the Carriage Office onto the Knowledge.

The Runs

When accepted the candidate will then be asked to attend an acceptance interview where they will be presented with the infamous "Blue Book" which is a book listing 400 routes through London which the candidate must learn, including all places of interest, museums, hospitals, police stations, cinema's, statues, monuments, restaurants, government buildings and any place that a fare paying passenger might require to go along these routes . After learning these routes the candidate can then inform the Public Carriage Office that they are ready to sit the written exam which if passed will allow them to continue onto appearances (appointments at the PCO for oral exams on routes).

The Appearances

After passing the written test a candidate can then progress onto appearances, an appearance is and appointment where the candidate is orally tested by a Knowledge of London examiner on his/her progress, depending on how well a candidate is doing depends on how soon they return to the PCO for another appearance, these usually take the form of 56 days, 28 days and 21 days. When a candidate has progressed to 21 day standard they will be required to take another driving test.

Once all of the above is competed to the satisfaction of the PCO the candidate may progress onto the next stage the suburbs of London.

The Suburbs

The suburbs are exactly that, the candidate is required to learn all of the main routes into and out of the suburban areas of London. This basically consists of over 100 suburban routes and places along those routes.

The Badge and License

Once a candidate has successfully completed all of the above criteria to the satisfaction of the Public Carriage Office and providing that they have not sustained any criminal convictions whilst on the Knowledge they are then presented with their "Badge and Bill" and can go to work as a London Taxi Driver.

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