Les Ridley driving instructor

Les Ridley driving instructor

Les Ridley School of Motoring offers a wide range of competitively priced driving lessons, for the y

Operating as usual

13/05/2023

There seems to be a lot of posts from people looking for a “Last Minute Driving Instructor”. So I thought I would try and help out, help you understand why you can’t find one.

Times have changed. So has the way we learn to drive…..

The Covid test backlog and certain other DVSA constraints, mean that Instructors are becoming hard to find. We all have around a 12 week waiting list. We appreciate those pupils that take time to get in touch, we add them to our waiting list, we appreciate that they wait diligently, until their turn comes up.

As Driving Instructors, we spend hours in our car with our “own” pupils. Sometimes over weeks, months, or even years.
We see them with adrenaline filled, shaking hands and legs in the first few lessons.
We see them overcome, with sensory overload on these ever increasingly congested roads of ours.
We see them struggle from week to week – sometimes one foot forward, 2 steps back.
We see them watch bad driving from other road users, and wonder why they have to reach a much, much higher standard.
We sometimes see them struggle financially, during this horrific cost of living crisis.
We often become friends, and share their family trials, tribulations and sometimes loss.
We become their confidante, and sometimes they become ours.
We build a relationship, and commit to stick with them till the day that all their hard work pays off, and they finally pass their test, with that smiling photo on social media with a prized pass certificate in their hands.
We sometimes become mentors in life, as well as in driving.
We are more proud of them, than they will ever know.

To parents of young pupils……. you entrust us to ensure that your child (the same child that you have nurtured, guided, cherished, protected and mentored for the last 17 years) passes their test with the skill, knowledge and confidence that will keep them SAFE on the roads for the rest of their lives….. it’s a big responsibility to a Driving Instructor, and one that we don’t take lightly.

NO…… its not easy, and its not quick, but is it really worth cutting the last corner with their safety? Its certainly not cheap, there are no corners to be cut. Learning to drive takes time……

And when its your turn to be test ready, we will do all we can to help you get a test, just as soon as we can, often swapping with other instructors and spending our own time on the phone swapping things around. The Apps that come up with cancellations are the bain of our lives…. open to any chancer, be they test ready or not, more often than not resulting in a fail and increasing the already insurmountable waiting list.

Did you know that DVSA now penalise Driving Instructors? If we present a candidate to test that fails very badly, every fault made is recorded against the Instructor. If too many faults are accrued, we are hauled over the coals and can be called up for a “Check Test”. This is where our Instructional Ability is assessed, under Exam Conditions ….. as a direct result of the candidates that we present under our badge. Repeated failures of this “Check Test” can mean that we will be struck off (regardless of our reputation, reviews or pass rate). We lose our vocation, our business, our livelihood………

We also have a working relationship with our Examiners. They know us, and we know them. Examiners have a tough job, we wont put them in danger with a dangerous candidate. We WILL NOT present a candidate to test, who is not ready. It’s a tough call and in my opinion the worst part of our job, to tell someone “you are not ready yet” and have to push their test back. Not to mention that tests slots are hard to come by. We try not to waste them.

So when we are suddenly asked, can you take me to test in 3 days time, my Instructor is “not available” (usually means the Instructor has said you are not test ready) …… is it any wonder that we won’t drop everything, push our own pupils precious lesson slot aside, put our Examiners in possible danger, and risk our own livelihood…… all because you have “found” a cancellation and want to “jump the queue” ??????

We are mostly overworked, dog tired and bone weary. But still, we do our best to look after our pupils, and help them reach that final goal. We turn up week after week, with a cheery smile and a “can do” motivational attitude (despite our burnt out clutch, scuffed alloys and sweaty seats 😀 ) We try and work around your shift patterns, even though we are sacrificing our own family time. We understand that passing your driving test means so much to you, opens so many doors and we will fully support you….. as best we can.

The best advice from Driving Instructors? Find an Instructor, do the recommended number of lessons (no matter how hard it might be to hear!). If you are not happy with your instructor, change Instructor. But work with us to make sure that when you sit your test, you have all the knowledge and practice you need, to make you safe and confident to drive unassisted.

I hope this post goes some way to help you, in understanding why you will never find a “last minute Driving Instructor”
Thanks for reading....

26/04/2023

BOOKING DRIVING TESTS !!!
In the future.

Get ready for changes to how you book and take your test this year.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is all set to make significant changes to how and when you book your driving test. After a consultation run by the agency between January and March in 2022, several proposals are now set to be introduced. These include:

1. Longer waits
What? If you fail your driving test, you will now need to wait 28 working days before being able to take another car driving test. Currently, the wait is 10 working days.

Why? To ensure that learners spend more time practising before attempting another test so they have a better chance of passing.

2. Shorter cancellation times
What? If you need to move or cancel your driving test, you now need to notify the DVSA at least 10 full working days before your test date to avoid losing your test fee. Currently, you can give notice three full working days before your test.

Why? If you need more practice, the move will give the DVSA more time to cancel your test and reallocate it to a learner who is good to go.

3. Eyesight checking
What? Currently, an eyesight check is carried out at the beginning of your test in good daylight, requiring you to read a number plate on a parked vehicle from 20 metres away. Get it wrong three times and the test is cancelled on the spot.

Why? Policy makers want the change so eyesight checks can be carried out in any level of light. This in turn could expand the availability of driving tests in different conditions and at other times of the day.

4. Certification displayed
What? Driving instructors will have to display their professional certificate in their windscreen when bringing you to your test.

Why? This will enable the DVSA to note your performance and how it reflects on your driving instructor. This will help the agency to assess if the instructor’s pupils are making any similar faults. The information could also be used to offer you performance information about instructors in your area when searching for one.

5. Pass certificates
What? Instead of receiving a paper version of your pass certificate after a successful theory or driving test, you will only be given a digital pass certificate.

Why? This will save on costs for the agency as well as create a more sustainable solution.

Many of these measures are part of the DVSA’s ‘Ready to Pass?’ campaign, which has been designed to improve pass rates by asking learners if they’re truly prepared to take their test. You can learn more about the campaign here.

“With more than half of people failing their driving test, it is clear more needs to be done to make sure learner drivers only take their test when they are fully prepared. These new measures will help make sure test-ready learners find appointments and give those who fail more time for more practice.”

• Loveday Ryder, CEO of the DVSA.

22/11/2022

Just for laughs! 🤣

This is funny The Ladybird book of Understanding your Driving Instructor (updated)

If you’ve decided you want to pass your driving test, obviously you’ll need to learn how to control a car and how to deal with traffic. You might not have realised though that you’ll need to learn how to deal with a Driving Instructor. There are around 40,000 of these individuals in the country and you’ll want to keep a good one when you find one. Here are some helpful tips and hints:

Cleanliness - Have a wash: a quick spray of Lynx Africa wont cut it if you haven’t had a shower for 4 days. 🚿
Time-keeping - Go out in time for your lesson. You’ll get sent a text if you’re 5 minutes late. At 10 minutes late your instructor will be away quicker than a Junkie’s Giro. 🚗 💨
Payment: online payment is the norm these days. I’m afraid if your instructor doesn’t see payment in their account at bedtime on the night before your lesson, they won’t even set their alarm! 🛌 💤 ⏰

During your lessons you’ll find you are forced to learn lots of things that you’ll never use in real-life driving, like checking blindspots, reversing into parking bays, identifying road-signs, obeying speed limits etc. Might seem pointless but the examiner will look for them on test day so it has to be done.

Despite the fact you’ve survived all 17 years of your life only looking forwards, you’ll find your instructor is obsessed with what’s happening behind you and to your sides. If this was truly important then obviously you’d have eyes on the side of your head like a fish. Sadly if you fail to check your mirrors frequently, you’ll find they nag you constantly or invent lots of silly games to force you to check them.

Around 99% of the population conform to the requirements of saluting Magpies. Driving Instructors don’t though, and will spout nonsense about road-safety if you dare carry out the usual salutations when on the move.

Everyone knows that being able to tell left from right is a black art, at best a 50/50 guess. Instructors however, go on courses at the Transportation Instruction Training School, where they master the art, getting it correct every time. Unfortunately for you this means they will expect you to be at the same level, despite having had only the 17 years to learn. Try turning right at a roundabout when you should’ve went left and they’ll react like you’ve just shat in their kettle!

Instructors are generally much younger than they appear but poor vehicle-sympathy prematurely ages them. Each crunched gear change or slipped clutch means yet another grey hair or wrinkle so take it easy. If they pat the dash and apologise to the car a lot, you might need to improve your smoothness or co-ordination.

Observing your instructors body-language at the end of the lesson will provide a good indication if they are likely to turn up again next week:
Did they drive away leaning forwards avoiding a sweaty seat-back?
Did they have to wipe a salty mess off the gear-knob?
Are they constantly muttering swear-words under their face-mask? 😷
Did you actually make it home or was the lesson abandoned in a pub car-park and they went in for a swift one?
Did they storm off in a huff when you drove in to the canal?
Are you still on your first instructor or are they instructor number 5 or 6?

Look after your instructor, treat them well and you’ll find they turn up week after week, until you can finally wave them goodbye and go on to develop your own style of driving. Treat them poorly though, you’ll find they might fake their own death or change mobile number to avoid you!

Beep beep!
Hope it makes you smile 😊

22/06/2022

Unfortunately due to the increase in the cost of fuel, I am having to increase lesson price from the 1st July.
When and if fuel prices reduce back to normal I will bring them back down.
new prices are ,


1 hour lesson£32.00

10 hours£300.00

20 hours£568.00

Saturday
NO BLOCK BOOKING DISCOUNT£35.00


06/03/2022

Pinched from another instructor but so true 🚗🚗🚗🚗

Fancy looking at a day in the life of a driving instructor?

Here goes......

We get abuse for being in the correct lanes.

We get abuse for sticking to the speed limits.

We get abuse for slowing down because it says so on the road.

We get abuse for pulling up outside your house.

We get abuse because the driver didn’t set off quick enough.

We get abuse for stalling.

We get abuse for not tailgating the car in front.

We even get abuse for not blocking junctions and not going into a box junction.

We get abuse when you kindly let a learner out but they don’t react as quick as you would like them too.

Please don't beep your horn, it really won't speed us up.

Until we teach one of your family to drive then for a short time the abuse stops, but only for a short time.

We're asked not to use a person's car to practice parallel park, but when we enquire where the person practiced their parallel when learning they reply a car at the side of the road - but that doesn't mean you can use mine !!!!!

We have all had to learn to drive, it’s funny how quickly we forget what it’s like.

We forget what it’s like to approach your first roundabout, the first parallel park, the first crossroads.

Please have a thought for us and our Students, it could be your son, daughter, niece, nephew. We can’t use a class room and trust me we don’t like holding you up anymore than you do!

Please be patient...

Thank you 🚗🏁

05/02/2022

Copied from another instructors page

DO YOU THINK YOU ARE READY TO TAKE A DRIVING TEST?

***** JUST A SMALL REMINDER *****

As driving instructors, we can only advise people about their readiness to take a test!

You may think you are driving well when the instructor is:

Telling you when to change gear!
Asking you what the speed limit is!
Talking you through every manoeuvre!
Telling you which lane to be in!
Reminding you which exit to come off of on a roundabout because you forget!
Helping you when you can’t work out if there is enough space for you to get your car through!

If all, or any of the above apply to you, then you are NOT test ready!

When the door shuts and it’s just you and the examiner, the car is the loneliest place to be, when you make a mistake and your brain goes to mush it’s the worst feeling ever!

Remember those family and friends who urge you to just have a go for the experience, aren’t the ones having to go through it, people have very selective memory’s when it comes to driving and tests!

Ask anyone who has failed a test if it was a nice experience!

Remember it’s YOU doing the test, no one else, no phone to google answers, no help from anyone else just YOU!

If you are up to standard, you will still be nervous, but you won’t be doubtful of your ability!

Go look in the mirror and have a straight talk with yourself!

This is a skill for life.

It saves YOUR life and other road users life.

ASK YOURSELF THIS QUESTION..........

Would you take an A level if you hadn’t studied enough and then expect to pass it?

Thanks for reading. Have a serious think .....

12/01/2022

Anyone who has a test booked at Elswick keep an eye out for an email.

22/05/2021

Need to introduce this in Hexham

06/05/2021

🚘UPDATE TO ALL PUPILS AND PUPILS WAITING TO START THEIR DRIVING LESSONS🚘

The driver training industry is currently under enourmous pressure due to the huge demand for driving lessons since the easing of the lockdown on 12th April 2021.

As we begin to return to some normality over the coming summer months, there will be large amounts of people wanting to either start learning to drive or restart their training.

As with most driving instructors at this time, we are currently FULLY BOOKED and have a waiting list of new learners eager to get started on their journey to becoming safe drivers. Learning to drive cannot be rushed and we must all stay safe on the roads, therefore it will take some time for current learners to achieve a standard ready to take a driving test and pass. We are working hard to free up some availability as quickly but as safely as possible.

We are also delayed due to a lack of theory and driving test availability. There are a lot of learners who are having to wait until the end of summer for a driving test, who may be ready now but cannot stop taking lessons as they will lose their confidence and possibly ability to drive to the same standard.

Please bear with us as we work through the backlog and get current learners through their driving test.

If you have been in touch about starting your lessons and have been added to our waiting list, please bear with us. We haven't forgotten about you! If you are looking to start your lessons and are planning to get in touch, please be aware that it will be some time before i can get you started.

If you already have a driving test booked at short notice and don't currently have a driving instructor please do not ask us if you can take you to your driving test. We will not take you to a test without assessing your current standard and we do not currently have availability for this at short notice. Please consider postponing your test and providing that test slot for someone who does have an instructor and is fully prepared ready to take a test.

Thank you for understanding and stay safe 🏎👍🙏

05/04/2021

It's official now, back to work next monday

10/03/2021

Taken from a post on Facebook
Figures from 9th March.

Official figures from the DVSA regarding the current backlog of theory & driving tests.

Theory test recovery
NASP asked about the recovery plan for theory and practical tests; the backlog of theory tests is currently 380,000. DVSA has been working with Pearson Vue before the new service launches in September, and the provision of 10 additional temporary theory test centres will help contribute to an extra 110,000 more tests per month when theory testing restarts. The aim is to clear the backlog by the end of August. The new booking system opens in July for September bookings.

Driving test recovery
There is a backlog of around 420,000 practical tests, with an average of 20 weeks waiting time.

DVSA is working with PHE and HSE to review procedures. 195 test centre waiting rooms were opened before lockdown and there will be an additional 27 when tests resume and another 27 following. There are 49 that may not be possible to use, and 58 sites without waiting rooms. There are 16 across the estate with no toilet facilities.

The target is to recover the backlog in 12 months, after the return to seven tests a day. DVSA stated everything would be done to achieve this and it was important for everyone to feel that it was getting better.

23/02/2021

Well we have been given hope , its looking like April the 12th might be the date to restart lessons again, This is just to let you know that, I will be in touch 2 weeks before to start booking lessons again, this is just in case things change ,I don't want to start disappointing people again,
Unfortunately I will only be able to offer 1 lesson per person per week to start, and people who have driving tests booked will take priority (some people have been waiting since March 2020) ,I hope people understand, it wont last forever things will go back to normal eventually
Thanks Les.,

05/02/2021

If you send a message on this page, please be aware, messages are not coming through straight away ? If you can , please get in touch via text or WhatsApp. Les

30/12/2020

Here we go again, I'll be in touch soon with people who have lessons and tests booked .

The Government has confirmed the following are suspended in Tier 4 areas:

🚗car practical tests and lessons
💻theory tests
🏍️motorcycle tests and lessons.

1/2

25/12/2020

Merry Christmas

02/11/2020

Here we go again 🙄

Photos from Les Ridley driving instructor's post 19/10/2020

Here we go again, it's the same old story, I thought you had moved :-(

30/07/2020

Latest update

01/07/2020

Latest update from the dvsa .

Guidance

Coronavirus: driving tests (England)

Car driving tests will restart in England on 22 July 2020 with safety precautions in place - other types of tests will restart before then.

Published 17 March 2020
Last updated 1 July 2020 — see all updates

From:Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency

Applies to:England (see guidance for Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland)

Contents

Stay up to date

When driving tests will restart

Arrange your driving test appointment

When you come for your driving test

During your driving test

At the end of your test

When you must not come for your test

If you’re classed as clinically extremely vulnerable from coronavirus

Apply for an emergency driving test if you’re a critical worker

Stay up to date

This page tells you about driving tests in England during the coronavirus outbreak.
It will be updated if anything changes.
Sign up for email alerts if this page changes.

Car driving tests will restart in England on Wednesday 22 July 2020 with new social distancing and safety precautions in place. These will only be for people who had their driving test cancelled because of coronavirus to begin with.
Driving tests are still suspended in Scotland and Wales.

There’s separate guidance about theory tests in England.

When driving tests will restart

Test typeDate tests will restartCarWednesday 22 July 2020Motorcycle module 1 and 2Monday 13 July 2020Lorry, bus and coachMonday 13 July 2020Car and trailerMonday 13 July 2020Tractor and specialist vehicleMonday 6 July 2020Approved driving instructor (ADI) part 2 test (driving ability)Wednesday 22 July 2020ADI part 3 test (instructional ability)To be confirmedADI standards checkTo be confirmed

Arrange your driving test appointment

If your car driving test was cancelled due to coronavirus, you were sent an email with a new date and time for your test.

The new date you were given will not go ahead. This includes if the new date you were given was from 22 July. Do not go for your test on that date.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) will email you again soon to ask you to go online and choose your preferred date and time for your test.
When you arrange your test, you’ll need to say if there’s a good reason you cannot wear a face covering when you take your test.



Booking a new driving test

You cannot currently book a new driving test if you did not have a test booked before lockdown.
Driving tests will be carried out for people who had their test cancelled because of coronavirus as a priority.
Check back or sign up for email alerts to find out when you can book a new driving test.

When you come for your driving test

Do not arrive for your driving test more than 5 minutes before your appointment time.
The driving test centre waiting room and toilets will be closed to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. However, you’ll be able to use the toilet if you have a disability or medical condition, or you’re pregnant.



Keeping you safe when you take your test

DVSA has introduced social distancing measures and safety precautions.
These include:

driving examiners wearing face coverings - they might also choose to wear gloves and use disposable seat covers

limiting the number of people arriving for a driving test at the same time

not allowing your driving instructor or supervising driver to sit in the back during your test

Wearing a face covering

You must bring and wear a face covering when you come for your test, unless you have a good reason not to. This includes if:

you have a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability that means you cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering

putting on, wearing or removing a face covering would cause you severe distress

you need to remove it during your test to avoid harm or injury or the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others

You need to say if you have a good reason not to wear a face covering when you arrange your test.

Your test will be cancelled if come for your test without a face covering and you did not declare you could not wear one when you arranged your test.

You will need to remove your face covering briefly so your driving examiner can check your ID.
Find out how to wear and make a cloth face covering.



During your driving test

If you have a problem with your face covering during the test, your driving examiner will ask you to stop so you can adjust it. Your driving examiner will end the test early if it becomes a safety issue.

If you make a mistake

You can carry on if you make a mistake during your driving test.
If you make a serious or dangerous fault, which means you’ve failed, your driving examiner will direct you back to the driving test centre, where the test will end. This is to minimise the amount of time you need to spend in the vehicle.
Find out more about how the car driving test works.

At the end of your test

Your driving examiner will:

ask you to get out of your vehicle before they give you your test result feedback

ask if you want your instructor to come over to listen to the feedback if it’s safe to do so

This is to minimise the amount of time you need to spend in the vehicle.

When you must not come for your test

You must not come for your driving test if:

you or someone you live with has coronavirus symptoms

you’ve been told by the NHS Test and Trace service that you’ve been in contact with a person who has coronavirus

you have entered or returned to the UK in the last 14 days, except in very limited situations

You have to stay at home (self-isolate).
Change your driving test appointment if you need to self-isolate on the day of your driving test.
You can do this free of charge if you’re self-isolating, including if you do it at short notice (within 3 clear working days of the test).



If you’re classed as clinically extremely vulnerable from coronavirus

If you’re clinically extremely vulnerable, you should have received a letter telling you that you’re in this group or have been told by your GP.
DVSA recommends that you take your driving test after 1 August 2020, when shielding will be paused

25/06/2020

Hello everyone

There is information going around that lessons are to restart on the 4th of July, at the moment we have heard nothing officially from the DVSA. (No surprise there)

We are waiting to hear about what guidelines should be out in place.

Please be patient I will get in touch over the next few days with everyone to confirm a plan for starting back.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Business support 15/06/2020

Latest update from the DVSA, looks like people who have tests booked , their test will be changed again.☹

Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency

Dear Leslie,

I wrote to you on 22 April 2020 to set out the steps that the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has taken to help slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), and what support the government has put in place for you.

I now want to update you on the planning we’re doing to help return to life that is as close to normal as possible, as quickly and fairly as possible, in a way that avoids a second peak of infections.

The plan to rebuild: the UK government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy
On 11 May 2020, the government published its COVID-19 recovery strategy which:

sets out the progress the UK has made to date in tackling the coronavirus outbreak
explains the plans for moving to the next phase of the response to the virus
Our priority remains to protect the public and save lives. That’s why any easing of measures must meet the government’s 5 tests. These are:

Protect the NHS’s ability to cope.
A sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rates from COVID-19.
Reliable data showing that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board.
Be confident that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand.
Be confident that any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelms the NHS.
Driving instruction and driving tests
Other than emergency training and tests for critical workers, driving instruction and driving tests have not yet been able to restart because the risk of transmission of the virus in vehicles is higher.

In his statement on 10 June, the Prime Minister reiterated that the government will remain cautious and measure the effect of the changes it makes. The Prime Minister explained this means moving slower than we’d have liked in some areas.

Driving instruction and tests will only restart when the government is confident that the assessment of risk warrants it, subject to the 5 tests and further detailed scientific advice.

In the meantime, I want to re-emphasise that you should continue to limit driving lessons to critical workers who are preparing for an emergency driving test.

Once again, I would like to thank those of you who have been able to offer driving lessons to critical workers during these unprecedented times.

We will, of course, share more information with you as soon as it’s available – including the dates that driving instruction and driving tests can restart.

Planning to restart our services
Teams across DVSA have been working extremely hard over the past few months to make sure we’re in the best possible position to restart our services as soon as it’s safe to do so.

Our priority is to make sure that you, your pupils and our staff stay safe.

The work is split into these main areas:

preparing guidance for driving examiners on carrying out driving tests
making sure our driving test centres are ready to reopen
making sure we have PPE in place
understanding which driving examiners might not be able to return to testing straight away
planning driving test schedules so that anyone who had a test cancelled because of coronavirus is considered a priority
understanding how the situation might be different in England, Scotland and Wales
I want to explain what each of these involves in a little more detail.

Preparing guidance for driving examiners
We are reviewing and updating the guidance for driving examiners about carrying out driving tests. This includes things like the PPE they need to wear, greeting candidates and cleaning equipment such as sat navs and tablets.

We’re also working hard to make sure we’ll be able to quickly help the NHS Test and Trace service (Test and Protect in Scotland, and Test, Trace, Protect in Wales) should a driving test candidate or driving examiner develop symptoms in the days after a test.

Making sure driving test centres are ready to reopen
Some of our driving test centres have now been closed for 12 weeks. We need to make sure they’re thoroughly checked before we can reopen them.

As just one example, we need to make sure the hot and cold water systems are free from legionella bacteria (which causes Legionnaires’ disease).

Many of the contractors that we rely on to do this work also put their services on hold during the lockdown. We’re busy working with them to get our test centre network safe and ready.

Making sure we have PPE in place
To help keep you, your pupils and driving examiners stay safe, we’ve ordered PPE for all driving examiners. This includes face coverings and gloves.

Since the start of pandemic, there has been a high demand for this type of equipment. Like many organisations, we’ve had to wait for supplies to become available.

Understanding which driving examiners will be available
As you’ll appreciate, some of our driving examiners are either clinically vulnerable from coronavirus, or extremely vulnerable. Others might live with or care for people in those groups.

We’ve been working with all our driving examiners to find out more about their situation so we know how many will be able to return to carrying out driving tests as soon as we’re able.

Planning driving test schedules
When we suspended driving tests, we rescheduled all your pupils’ driving tests to a named date and time.

But we now have 3 issues to think about:

rescheduled dates might not be suitable for you and your pupils, as situations may have changed
not all driving examiners will be available
social distancing measures might limit the number of tests we can carry out
This means we need to think about the best way to make sure your pupils can take their test at a convenient time, in a way that’s fair to everyone.

The fairest way we can do this is to put all the rescheduled tests ‘on hold’.

This means the test will no longer go ahead on the originally rescheduled date.

We will then ask people in the backlog to go online and choose their preferred date and time. We’ll invite them to do this in batches, based on when their test should have originally taken place.

We will contact you before we start this process, so you can make your pupils aware of what’s happening. We will also contact them directly with more information.

We are also planning how we can continue to help critical workers to get a test as a priority throughout this process.

Understanding how differences in England, Scotland and Wales might affect us
As you will be aware, public health is the responsibility of the devolved governments in Scotland and Wales. This means that there are currently different lockdown rules in place for England, Scotland and Wales.

We are talking to the devolved administrations about how this might affect us restarting our services in Scotland and Wales.

Financial support
If you’re self-employed, you can claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme. The scheme allows you to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months’ worth of profits, and capped at £7,500 in total.

If you’re eligible and want to claim the first grant you must make your claim on or before 13 July 2020.

The scheme is being extended. You’ll be able to make a claim for a second and final grant in August 2020. If you’re eligible, the second and final grant will be a taxable grant worth 70% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering a further 3 months’ worth of profits, and capped at £6,570 in total.

The government is also providing the following help for the self-employed:

deferral of Self Assessment Income Tax and VAT payments
grants for businesses that pay little or no business rates
Business Interruption Loan Scheme
Bounce Back Loan
Find out more about the support available at https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus/business-support.

Keeping you updated
I know the last few months have been challenging. I know the uncertainty is worrying. And I know you are concerned about how you can support your customers, your business and your family.

We will update you with news about driving instruction and driving tests as soon as we are able to.

I also urge you to keep up to date with the driving instructors’ National Associations Strategic Partnership (NASP) website at http://www.n-a-s-p.co.uk.

Coronavirus is the biggest and most complex challenge the country has faced in a generation. Our aim has been to help slow the spread of coronavirus and to save lives. This continues to be our overriding priority.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

I hope that you, your family and your friends remain safe and well.

Yours sincerely,

Gareth Llewellyn

Chief Executive
Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Business support Get coronavirus (COVID-19) support for your business or if you’re self-employed, and find out how to keep your business and your employees safe

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Prudhoe

Opening Hours

Monday 8:30am - 8pm
Tuesday 8:30am - 8pm
Wednesday 8:30am - 8pm
Thursday 8:30am - 8pm
Friday 8:30am - 8pm
Saturday 9am - 12:30pm
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