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Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Black cab blunder, part 2

You're recollect that about a month ago, I was taken on a long tour of London by a cabbie (a proper London taxi) who couldn't find his way from Marble Arch to Marylebone Station (a five minute trip between two important London landmarks). I complained to TfL (Transport for London). Today, I got a reply.

3 November 2015


Dear Dr Soloman



Thank you for your email dated 11 October 2015 regarding the actions of a licensed taxi driver. Please accept my sincere apologies for the delay in responding.

We expect all taxi drivers to comply with all relevant highway legislation and to conduct themselves professionally at all times when dealing with the public.

In order to take this matter further I will contact the driver directly and ask for their version of events in writing.  Once this is received the complaint is then forwarded to management for a decision to be made, you will then be informed of the outcome of your complaint. 

I am sorry that you have had cause for complaint, but thank you for bringing this matter to our attention.


Notice he spelled my name wrong. But more importantly, they've let a month go by before even starting to look into it. Meanwhile, a cabbie whose Knowledge of London is non-existent, is driving London tourists to Birmingham by way of Beach Head.

The Rolling English Road 

Before the Roman came to Rye or out to Severn strode,
The rolling English drunkard made the rolling English road.
A reeling road, a rolling road, that rambles round the shire,
And after him the parson ran, the sexton and the squire;
A merry road, a mazy road, and such as we did tread
The night we went to Birmingham by way of Beachy Head.

I knew no harm of Bonaparte and plenty of the Squire,
And for to fight the Frenchman I did not much desire;
But I did bash their baggonets because they came arrayed
To straighten out the crooked road an English drunkard made,
Where you and I went down the lane with ale-mugs in our hands,
The night we went to Glastonbury by way of Goodwin Sands.

His sins they were forgiven him; or why do flowers run
Behind him; and the hedges all strengthening in the sun?
The wild thing went from left to right and knew not which was which,
But the wild rose was above him when they found him in the ditch.
God pardon us, nor harden us; we did not see so clear
The night we went to Bannockburn by way of Brighton Pier.

My friends, we will not go again or ape an ancient rage,
Or stretch the folly of our youth to be the shame of age,
But walk with clearer eyes and ears this path that wandereth,
And see undrugged in evening light the decent inn of death;
For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen,
Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green.

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