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Driving test centres standards questioned as Crawley’s instructor centre comes in top quarter of easiest centres to pass at



New research released has shown an enormous difference between the pass rates for people applying to be an instructor over the past 10 years at different centres around the country.

The huge differences between pass rates for would-be driving instructors training at different test centres hints at a gulf between examination standards, new analysis shows.

Car specialist AMT has used official statistics from the Department for Transport, which lists instructor applicants’ pass rates for every UK test centre over the past ten years. 

The Approved Driving Instructor Part 3 Test assesses the instructional abilities of a person who wants to become an instructor, and is crucially the final examination before they’re able to work as one. It can only be taken once all other tests have been passed. 

AMT took the Part 3 Test pass rates for every year of the past decade for each of the country’s 219 DVSA test centres. It then calculated an average for the 10-year period, which revealed how consistent the divisions in standards are.

On average over the past decade, just 6% of applicants who took the instructional test at the Ashford test centre in London passed, making it the toughest test centre for instructors in the UK. 

The easiest centre from which to become an instructor is Tunbridge Wells, with a 71% pass rate.

The national average pass rate across all centres was 37% while Crawley came in at almost 43% which out of 219 centres ranked it in the top quarter of all centres to pass at.

10 hardest centres to pass instructor test (pass rate 10-year average):
1. Ashford (London): 6%
2. Sidcup (London): 16%
3. Sutton Coldfield (Birmingham): 17%
4. Kingstanding (Birmingham): 18%
5. Paisley: 18%
6. Hendon (London): 19%
7. Dunfermline: 20%
8. Dundee: 20%
9. Aberdeen South: 20%
10. King’s Heath (Birmingham): 21%

10 easiest centres to pass instructor test (pass rate 10-year average):
1. Tunbridge Wells: 71%
2. York: 69%
3. Bangor: 67%
4. Gosforth: 67%
5. Livingston: 67%
6. Pembroke Dock: 67%
7. Brislington (Bristol): 63%
8. St Albans: 63%
9. Chelmsford: 61%
10. Letchworth: 60%

Reacting to the findings, AMT’s general manager Ian Wright said:

“The fact that instructor pass rates at individual test centres vary by such huge margins will be shocking to many, as it suggests that the standards against which applicants are judged also differ.

“Normally, you would expect test centres’ results to vary around a common figure and for them to even out over time. The fact that these statistics are an average over the past ten years, yet are still so extreme, shows that the differences between centres are more permanent. 

“There also appears to be no geographic trend. So are driving instructors in one location more capable than those in another? It’s something that, if I were learning to drive again, knowing this, I’d want to look into it.”

AMT also recently analysed which towns and cities see learner drivers pass and fail their driving tests most.

To read these results visit


Over £2m given to Crawley Council for discretionary business grants



Eligible Crawley businesses can now apply for discretionary business grants.

The government has given the council £2,248,180 in Additional Restrictions Grant, which is given to businesses that have been affected by the lockdown but are not legally required to close.

This funding lasts until March 2022 and is based on £20 per person in Crawley rather than the number of businesses in the town.

Eligible businesses are those who:

  • Are not entitled to Local Restriction Support Grants, and
  • Were open and trading the day before national restrictions were imposed (Wednesday 4 November), and
  • Are now required to close under national restrictions or, while not legally forced to close, are severely impacted by the restrictions.

Applications for the Additional Restrictions Grant can now be made at

There are different types of grants based on the rateable value of property/property costs or business type.

Businesses can check if they’re eligible for the Additional Restrictions Grant by visiting

There is further guidance and a copy of the West Sussex countywide policy on the council’s website. The scheme will close on Sunday 13 December and the aim is to make payments as soon as possible after that.

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of the Council, said:

“While we haven’t been allocated enough funding to help every local business, we will do everything we can to support as many Crawley businesses as possible.

“If you need support please get in touch via the council’s dedicated webpage.”

Applications for the Local Restriction Support Grant opened on 17 November. Businesses forced to close by the second lockdown can apply for this grant at For more details on help available for businesses visit

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