South Tyneside cabbies have gone back to the classroom to help drive up standards.
A group of 25 taxi drivers has been presented with certificates after completing NVQ training.
The course, which was attended by both Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Drivers, covered key aspects of working in the taxi trade, including health and safety, customer service and driving in a professional manner.
It also involved raising awareness of issues such as exploitation, vulnerability, safeguarding, accessibility and disability.
Cllr Mark Walsh, Lead Member for Housing and Transport, said: "Taxis play an important role in our transport network, particularly in terms of getting people home safely in the evenings, as well as providing a safe and effective means of transport for people with disabilities.
"For visitors, a taxi ride often provides their first impression of the Borough and we are keen to ensure that they have a positive experience.
"This training provides an opportunity to further reinforce the professionalism of drivers and place passenger safety and protection at the heart of our taxi service."
The training was delivered by Positive Futures on behalf of South Tyneside Council's Licensing Service and funded by the council's Skills Service.
A further 25 drivers are nearing completion of the training.
Cllr Walsh added: "The scheme has obvious benefits for both the taxi trade and passengers.
"Drivers have been really enthusiastic about it and we hope to be able to offer the training to more in the future."