If you spot a black cab chances are you’re in London, the same goes for yellow taxis in New York; these two vehicles are a part of the fabric of city life in these iconic cities. Bristol is no different when it comes to creating its own fleet of unmistakable cabs. They’re one of the first things you’ll notice about the city arriving from Temples Meads. Because in Bristol our taxis are blue.
Well, at least all the hackney carriages are. Other private hire vehicles, like Uber and other pre-booked taxi services, come in a variety of colours. But if you’re waving a taxi down on the street or grabbing one from a taxi rank, it’s going to need to be blue in Bristol. Specifically Bristol Blue. (They should also all have an illuminated taxi sign on the roof, as well as white and red licence plates.)
The scheme isn’t that old but does pre-date the arrival of Uber to UK shores. Since 2011, all Hackney cabs in Bristol have had to be painted blue. It was introduced to ensure people knew they were hailing a genuine licensed taxi cab. So next time you’re hailing down a taxi and jumping in, just make sure that it’s Bristol Blue. To ensure you’re getting a real Bristol taxi head here.
But why are taxis Bristol Blue?
Bristol Blue refers to a very specific shade of blue. It comes from Bristol blue glass, which has been made in the city since the 18th century. This dark blue glass was largely responsible for the city’s industrial success, used for everything from flower vases to gin bottles. As an iconic aspect of the city’s history, it is a fitting colour to paint Bristol taxis.