Barrow Voice
www.barrowvoice.co.uk -
First Publised 1975
3,000 copies published quarterly and delivered FREE to all households in Barrow upon Soar

Sam's Taxi Service in the Spotlight

This Barrow-based private hire taxi firm has been established since 2010 and is family run and operated. The boss is Sam Hughes, and his wife, Yvonne, chuckled as she described herself as the Junior Partner. The third member of the team is George May, Yvonne's stepdad. Sam and Yvonne met at Meadow Farm Marina in 2008 and married in 2010. They lived on a narrow boat there for eight years so their bungalow on Brian Close seems very spacious.

They now have a fleet of four vehicles, including two minibuses equipped for disabled passengers. Sam started the business with an estate car then changed it for a minibus that could transport wheelchairs, but quickly found that older clientele couldn't clamber up the rather steep steps. His solution: he hijacked Yvonne's car, turning it into a taxi but leaving her without a car until she had passed her taxi test. Meanwhile, her mum had become an escort to accompany children with special needs while Yvonne became the driver and got her old car back. She was very pleased.

Transporting vulnerable children is still an important part of the family business but they also offer all the usual taxi services: trips to airports, doctors, dentists, hospitals, shopping trips etc. Most of these journeys are local, although Heathrow is a common destination along with Southampton and other seaports. Once they were asked to quote to take a lady to a holiday in Portugal but it was going to cost about £2,600 to drive there, back home for the driver, back to Portugal to pick up the lady 2 weeks later and then drive back to Leicestershire. They suggested to the lady that next time they should all go on holiday to Portugal!

They don't only transport humans. George told of taking a dead tortoise to the home of its owner from the vet’s. The owner was too distressed to drive herself. Two weeks later George was asked to take a second tortoise to the vet. And then Sam took a chicken to the vet! Their manner had obviously impressed. The firm is also happy to carry well behaved cats and dogs, including guide dogs.

Sam's Taxi Service is licensed for private hire, which means that clients must book in advance (01509 415246 or 07954370748). Drivers may not wait for new custom at train or bus stations ("ranking"). Occasionally, when a Sam's Taxi is waiting for a booking, someone opens the door and tries to persuade the driver to taxi them somewhere but this is not allowed. Sam says that fortunately most people know and accept the rules. Sam commented, “We offer a reliable and friendly service, even taking people round shops etc. One lady whom Yvonne takes in a wheelchair goes shopping with her and often makes her a cup of tea on returning home.”

Barrow Voice wishes them continuing success.
Judith Rodgers