Driving lessons can be challenging at the best of times. Most early teenager can’t wait to get started on driving lessons. In Saudi Arabia, most women rely on their sons to drive them places. The CNN ran a story in June, 2012, that a lot of twelve and thirteen year old boys in Saudi Arabia actually drive on the road, with or without a licence. In England, it is a different story. This is Bobby Gilmore’s story.
Bobby Gilmore, a 16-year-old teenager in Leicester, was sorting through his father’s great grand-father’s treasure chest and stumbled upon a green looking paper. It was thick, just like a post card. Looking closely, he discovered it to be an old type driving licence. There was no photograph on it, unlike today where one would be unable to do driving lessons without the photo-card or the paper counterpart. He wondered why. On closer inspection he saw the date and calculated the driver licence was over 50 years old.
History about his ancestry had always intrigued Bobby. This was gold! So Bobby Gilmore rummaged some more into the treasure trove and found a neatly folded newspaper. It looked unassuming, but he wanted to know why there was a local news item about a local bobby who was the first police constable to arrest a man for not stopping at the end of the road.
Fred Nolense, the arrested driver, claimed he had given himself doubled his stopping distance because the road was covered in snow and there was no “giveway” line insight. If only Mr. Nolense knew it was five times what he calculated. He just might have been able to stop, if he really wanted.
The Magistrate agreed with prosecuting brief that there was a “Giveway” sign. After all, there was picture evidence. However, Fred Nolense re-bottled, saying the said broken white lines in the picture was covered in snow on the day of the infraction. Besides, even it there was, it was a “giveway” and did not mean stop.
Technically, Fred’s thinking was somewhat correct, at least to a point.
“Giveway”, in those days, as they do today, has never meant “stop”. Stopping at the end of the road, in England and Wales, was a mere matter of prescribed courtesy at the end of a road marked with the double broken white lines. To stop, we have stop lines and stop signs. Stop signs are octagonal in shape, so that even in heavy snow it is still discernible. The “Giveway” sign, however, means giving priority to vehicles and any likely traffic (including pedestrians), on the new road. It made interesting reading, but all Bobby could think about was when he could start driving lessons.
Even in his sleep, Bobby wished to be 17 so he could start learning how to drive. He knew the age at which anyone can start driving is 17, after obtaining a valid provisional driving licence. However, he recalled his father saying that he was only sixteen when he passed his driving test with 5 driver faults. But Bobby’s dad had been in receipt of higher rate of mobility disability living allowance. So it was acceptable.
The picture of the arresting officer was one of sincere maturity. The grainy black and white pixels showed the sparkle of the constable’s shiny silver badge. On it was emblazoned the name “Robert Gilmore”. Bobby’s eye’s widened and he read on, his interest ignited beyond his comprehension.
“Was that how I got my name?” He couldn’t help but wonder, so he read on.
Fred Nolense, who had only had his new licence a total of 3 months, was found guilty and punished very leniently, one might say by today’s standards. He had already been found guilty of three other speeding offences with up to 9 points to boot. The Magistrate simply ordered Fred Nolense to pay for the damages to the other person’s vehicle with a strongly worded reprimand and some advice on the need to look to improving his driving skills.
Today, any new driver with less than two years full licence may forfeit the licence if a total of six points was accumulated. It could also mean doing the Theory Test and the practical driving test all over again. This sort of rough justice implies finding a suitable driving instructor for driving lessons to iron out the poor driving habits. If one is, however, pushed for time, an intensive driving course may not be a bad idea.
Bobby did commence driving lessons at the age of 17. For Bobby Gilmore, the driving test went like a breeze. However, upon completion, he was sadly informed he did not cut the mustard.
Apparently, Bobby was driving too slow.
Bobby could not understand how driving slower could be a bad thing.
“Surely slow mean safe!” Bobby muttered to his driving instructor on the drive back home. “My dad had five faults and passed. I only had two!”
Driving below the speed limit can frustrate following traffic into overtaking unsafely. That is a fact. As a result, it is best to keep up with the speed limit, if safe. And yes, it is enough to cause a fail at any driving test.
Driving instructors always teach learners to drive in accordance to the speed limit, in so far as it is safe to do so. After passing any obstruction, one should immediately bring the car to drive faster. (Emphasis: within the speed limits).
Luckily, Bobby managed to pass his driving test three days before his 18th birthday. When he returned home from the surprise party his mother had arranged in his honour, he was also pleasantly surprised to find an old jalopy waiting on the driveway. The only caveat was that he wasn’t allowed to start driving until he had done further training.
Bobby was furious!
Pass Plus Driving Lessons
The Pass Plus Course was designed by government to help improve the driving skills on newly qualified drivers. It has since been recognised by insurance companies who pass on discounted premiums for any one who undertakes the driving course. Driving tuition for pass plus does not imply taking another exam. However, the pick up has been slow. Those who did layout the money have gone on to find it very valuable, because they found themselves more confident driving on motorways, driving at night, on country roads, in cities and in adverse weather conditions.
One should not be shy about taking further driving lessons. Further training can help reduce the risk of collision with other traffic, and a life saver.
Driving Lessons in Leicester
Driving tuition does not come cheap. Some people engage the help of relatives who tend to transfer some of their own poor driving habits. Others ”hate” the idea of teaching their spouse how to drive. They value the partnership more. So for the safety conscious learner drivers wanting professional driving lessons in Leicester, there is a range of qualified driving instructors ready and keen to help for driving test purposes.