Taxi firm hoping to move back to Shenfield station site

A taxi office in Shenfield is set to return six years after it was moved due to Crossrail works.

The office of Shenfield Taxis had based its operation almost outside the station – but was moved from its 50-year-old radio hut to a spot less prominent in 2015 to make way for Crossrail.

Shenfield Taxis, known for its green stickered fleet of cars, moved to a position to the rear of the high street. The company said that at this location it has lost naturally passing trade.

Work at the Crossrail site in nearby Friars Avenue began at the start of February with workers clearing trees and other foliage off the bank so that main works of creating a new platform six and strengthening the embankment could begin.

Following the completion of Crossrail works in the area – under agreements in the initial Crossrail agreements – the taxi cabin building has to be moved back to a more prominent position close to where it initially stood.

Karen Schofield, one of Shenfield Taxis bosses, said: “That is where Crossrail wants to put it but whether Brentwood Council approves is another matter.”

Ms Schofield said the business is looking forward to moving back.

Speaking of where Shenfield Taxis relocated to, she said: “No-one knows we’re there. It has been very slow.

“We have lost all our passing trade.”

The plans also involve the installation of a 2.4 metre high steel palisade fence and gates to the new bin storage area adjacent to the relocated taxi cabin.

Meanwhile Crossrail has announced that it believes it is on track to fully open in early 2022 after ramping up testing by running four trains an hour.

This ‘trial running’ has been described as a “crucial moment” in the development of the £19 billionn east-west rail link across the capital. It will take a period of time to fully test the Elizabeth line before it can open for passenger service.

This includes a final phase known as ‘trial operations’ involving people being invited onto trains and stations to test real-time service scenarios to ensure the readiness of the railway.

Following the opening of the central section, full services across the Elizabeth line from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Abbey Wood and Shenfield in the east will be introduced. The introduction of full services will be aligned with the National Rail timetable change.

Piers Meyler

Local Democracy Reporter