Saturday, 10 December 2016



Dear Ms Street-Porter,
I have no idea how to contact you, so this is the best I can do.
I believe I know why you wrote that piece about DDD, and I empathise.
I empathise because a cab driver pestered a friend of yours.
I have had to block that same driver from my phone.
He is an incessant pest.
He is not a part of DDD. Nor do I know anything about the USA version.
My friend and I came up with the name over fish and chips in Whitecross Street.

DDD is not about Uber. It is about TfL deregulating the Private Hire industry to appease Uber. Therefore background checks are not as stringent as they should be. Male and females have been attacked as a result.
Uber are not so much a threat to Taxis, as they are to other minicab companies.
The threat to the Taxi is TfL's mismanagement of our roads, leading to a high volume of congestion. Nothing to do with DDD.

I am not here to apologise for someone else's actions. And believe me, I sympathise with your colleague. Her protagonist is as thick skinned and backward as you will ever find.

You have written your article, which I agree is straight about most things.
We all have to bare the burden of Warboys.
As you know, there are nasty bastards in all walks of life. Seventeen police officers committed rape during this past year. Paedo rings involving prominent MPs, judges, doctors, celebrities, milkmen, postmen, etc.
A Taxi driver was charged with rape in 2014.
It is not about the odd teacher or priest, it is about the scale of rape and sexual assault by TfL licensed minicab drivers in London alone.
Getting into a minicab or Uber does not have to be dangerous. If TfL are backed by this Government to do proper background checks via a minimum of a three year DBS, most of these sexual and physical assaults can be avoided. This is exactly in line with Mayor Khan's wishes.
The scale of minicab rape is backed up by a Metropolitan Police freedom of information application, and acknowledged by Sadiq Khan during his Mayor's Questions by the GLA, earlier this year.
Staggering statistics, I know. It was a shock to us too! This is why we organised Dads Defending Daughters.

I do not have to discredit Uber, they do that to themselves, all across the globe.
Uber will never go away. They will just become another AddLee, when they are regulated.

As for DDD's hidden agenda, we simply do not have one. No egos, no sought after limelight. Nothing other than the desire to inform the public.
The media refuse to acknowledge the problem. Murdoch scuppered the story. The BBC remains silent (nothing new there).
You are not the first to question our motives. And why not? Our aim comes across as obvious protectionism. I can see that. Val Shawcross views us that way too.
I personally do deal in protectionism, but not under the guise of the DDD. The DDD is pure of heart.

We can talk about a corrupt TfL, the 'Great Bus Scam', the CSH, the mismanagement of building sites and roadworks that are affecting and destroying our city and my trade. But that has little or nothing to do with DDD.
I honestly believe Uber has had very little impact on my pocket.
I do not hate Uber drivers. I know they are as much victims of Uber as their rivals. But neither do I feel sympathy for them.

When Uber are toeing the legitimate line, and TfL have been made to take their duty of care seriously, DDD will be satisfied.
Although, I do see a problem with an understaffed and under policed 24 hour tube.

Kind regards,
Lenny Etheridge

Click here for Janet Street-Porter's article.


  1. Fantastic reply, and perhaps the only reply warrented.

    However, and I believe this to be a case in point, Janet Street Porter never said in her article why she felt compelled to write anarticle , which most readers would consider was targeted at DDD.

    When you are constantly at the coalface, everything appears binary, there is only black-and-white, and no in between. Grey areas constitute a compromise, and compromises are not what we do. Especially when someone has chosen not to indicate the motive for a damning article

    It is a shame really, instead of attempting to discredit and demean a very just and worthy group, Janet could have appealed to taxidrivers sensitivity. Out of character perhaps, but much more beneficial. Compounding this, because her article was ill researched, she also ensured en-mass vilification. She can't now hate on a whole industry for doing to her, what she has effectively just done to them.

    But it would not, and should not, hurt us to acknowledge someone else's experience may be different from our own. And when talking about the subject of rape, we cannot pretend, and therefore should not assume, that we know that persons history.

    The bottom line is, this whole ghastly episode should never of happened. I hope Janet Street Porter and DDD can make reparation because all in all both are good for society.

  2. A very level headed and honest reply, Lenny. There isn't much more you could have said to have explained the situation.
    As for our volatile and gormless colleague, well ! I am not sure I know this celebrity but with "support" like this, it is no wonder we are running through treacle.
    Keep throwing punches Len.
    See you in the trenches mate and God bless.