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Do You Need a Transport Manager on a Restricted Licence?

If you’ve ever wondered about the rules and regulations surrounding heavy goods vehicle (HGV) operator licensing in the UK, you’ve come to the right place! One question that often pops up is whether a transport manager is required when operating under a restricted licence. In this article, we’ll explore the topic and provide the answers you need so you can make an informed decision  about whether you will have a transport manager when operating on a restricted operator licence.

What is a Restricted Licence?

Before we delve into the question, let’s first understand what a restricted licence is. In the UK, operators who transport goods using HGVs must hold an operator’s licence, which grants them permission to run their vehicles legally. There are three types of licences: a standard national licence, a standard international licence and a restricted licence.

A restricted licence is issued when an operator’s business wants to carry their goods, but not other people’s goods. This type of licence comes with certain limitations and conditions to ensure that the operator adheres to specific requirements set by the government.

The Role of a Transport Manager:

A transport manager plays a vital role in overseeing the operations of a goods vehicle business. They are responsible for ensuring compliance with various legal and safety regulations. The transport manager’s duties include maintaining vehicle records, managing drivers’ hours and rest periods, and implementing proper maintenance and safety protocols.

The Legislation:

According to the UK government’s official website (, the legislation regarding the need for a transport manager on a restricted licence is outlined in the Public Passenger Vehicles Act 1981 and the Goods Vehicles (Licensing of Operators) Act 1995.

To make it easier to understand, let’s break down the legislation.

Legally as it currently stands restricted operators may not need to appoint a transport manager. This typically applies when the operator is running a very small-scale business, often referred to as “own-account” operations. In such cases, the operator is responsible for managing their own vehicles and drivers and ensuring compliance with the necessary regulations.

In most cases, however, operators on a restricted licence will appoint a qualified transport manager. The appointed transport manager should have the necessary skills, knowledge, and professional competence to oversee the transport operations effectively. They should be familiar with the rules and regulations pertaining to the industry and ensure compliance with them.


To sum it up, while there are scenarios where a transport manager may not be required on a restricted licence, it is generally advisable to appoint one. A transport manager helps maintain high standards of safety and compliance within the HGV operator’s business, ensuring the well-being of drivers, vehicles, and the public.

Restricted operators are legally required to adhere to the terms of their operators licence just as any other type of operator licence holder therefore, it’s almost considered business suicide to take the risk of operating without one.

Remember, understanding and abiding by the regulations is crucial to operate within the law and maintain a successful and safe transport business. If you have any specific concerns or questions about your particular situation, it is always best to consult the relevant authorities or seek professional advice.

NTP online Learning offers a number of courses for restricted operators and for individuals who want to become qualified transport managers. Click here to find out more about our transport manager CPC course.

Stay informed, stay compliant, and drive safely!

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