Learn to drive
So you want to learn to drive? OK, the first thing you will need to do is to get your
Provisional Licence. You can apply for the provisional licence when you are 16, but you are not allowed to drive a car until you are 17. For further details visit www.direct.gov.uk.
The provisional licence application form (D1) is available from your local Post Office and we recommend you apply about 3 months before your 17th birthday. You should then receive your licence back in time to book your driving lessons for your birthday.
You also need to check your eyesight. Can you read an old style number from 20.50 metres, or 20 metres for the new style number plate? (Approximately 5 car lengths). If you need to wear contact lenses, or glasses to do this, you must wear them whilst driving.
Your First Lesson
What to expect from your first driving lesson.
Most people are nervous about getting behind the wheel of a car for the first time, but don’t worry! Your driving instructor will soon put you at ease. You will not be expected to drive off on a busy road on your first driving lesson.
Your driving instructor will introduce you to the controls and safety aspects of the car, taking you through all of the levers and pedals and how to use them. After that you’ll start the car up and drive it a little way down the road before bringing it to a stop. You will then be introduced to each stage of driving in manageable stages.
Our driving lessons are structured in a way to enable you to pass your driving test in the quickest possible time.
Driving lessons can be structured to suit your individual needs. We advise you have two hours per week.
Theory Test and Practical tests
The Theory Test is in two parts and you have to pass both parts of the test on the same day. In the first part there are 50 questions, and you need to answer correctly 43 or more questions in 57 minutes. Once you pass this part of the test after a short break you will take the Hazard Perception test.
The Hazard Perception test consists of a series of 14, 1 minute video clips, each showing potential hazards involving road conditions and other road users. You will have 15 hazards to identify and you can score up to 5 points on each one. You need to score at least 44 out of a possible 75 points in order to pass.
It is best to start your driving lessons before attempting the Theory and Hazard Perception Tests. The practical experience you gain in the car will help you to understand and answer the questions. As your driving instructor I will be happy to help you with your preparation for the Theory and Hazard Perception Tests.
There are many myths about examiners on the day of a driving test, being in a bad mood, or having to fail a percentage of candidates, not true! If you drive well on the day of your driving test, you will pass! The practical driving test is approximately 40 minutes long and you will have to demonstrate the driving skills that you have learned in your driving lessons. You’ll have to show that you can drive competently and safely in all kinds of driving situations. You will be asked to do two of three manoeuvres that you have practised with you Acclaim instructor, and possibly make an emergency stop. You'll be asked to answer two vehicle safety check questions, one show me, and one tell me, plus read a number plate at the required distance.
To pass you will have to complete the test with no serious faults, and you must have 15 or less minor faults.
You will need to study the Highway Code, and use Theory Test and Hazard Perception aids.
You're bound to be nervous before and during your driving test. This is perfectly natural and there's nothing we can say or do to take away the nervous shakes or sweaty palms. But rest assured we would not have put you forward for your driving test if you were not ready, and once the test begins all of your training will be put into practise! So remember just try to keep calm, take your time and don’t get flustered.