UPDATE 06/04/2021 Restart on the 12th April confirmed

Over the last 4 weeks, I have been inviting you all to get in touch and book your lessons. A few of you have yet to do so, meaning the availability of lessons is already reduced, so if you haven't yet, get booked in now

With the longer daylight hours, and improvements made to the hygiene materials and procedures, I have managed to increase availability from 2x2hr slots to 3x2hr slots per day (excluding Fridays). This means there will be 14 slots available per week rather than 10, and these will be daily at 9am, 12pm and 3pm (no 3pm on Fridays)

To keep this post short, here are some questions I have anticipated you may have. Click on the question for an explanation

Yes, if it is available. In fact this approach makes diary management easier for us, and allows you to plan your availability well ahead with your work and family commitments

To book a driving test, you must pass your Theory Test first. Test availability is going to be an issue for the rest of this year with the current waiting time at 18 weeks, and an undisclosed number of people unable yet to secure a test booking

Theory Tests in Grimsby are readily available from May onwards, but Driving Tests are currently unavailable (up to end June). More slots will be opening up soon in July, with demand expected to be high. I would again stress the importance of passing your theory test as soon as possible, if you have not already done so to enable a test booking to be made

It is possible that you will only get one attempt at your test this year, so it is important that you are confident and well prepared, possibly even over-prepared!

No! Despite higher than normal demand for lessons across the country, unlike some driving schools, we have no plans to increase the lesson tariff until the annual September review

From your perspective, No. We will still sign off on the same questionnaire, and do a temperature check before the lesson starts. I will be using lateral flow tests twice a week on myself and using gloves between the clean down prior to you lesson and picking you up to optimise lesson time

Your space on my diary is guaranteed as long as you restart your lessons during April. However that will depend on the diary and your availability finding a fit. If you have not already scheduled your lesson re-start, please do so ASAP

New starters have been deferred until May, if and when a slot becomes available

If there are any other questions you have that are not covered in the above, please get in touch, and don't forget to BOOK YOUR RESTART LESSON

Regards

Steve

t. 07736389636

[email protected]

UPDATE 26/03/2021 Restart on the 12th April

Lesson re-start is still on schedule for Monday 12th April, pending no further conditions being imposed by the government
Rescheduling the lesson diary is proving to be a challenge as I am still waiting for a number of you to make contact. Please don't assume that everything will be as it was because although I have made some progress with lesson availability and the hygiene slots, there are still fewer slots available per week than there were pre Covid. Your schedules will have changed and so has mine, so PLEASE get in touch as soon as possible, the lesson choice will become more limited as time goes by. (I am putting names in slots to avoid overbooking, but we need to communicate to ensure we have a fit

The DVSA and its new Chief Officer issued an email to all instructors this week. You can view the lengthy detail of this update by visiting https://bit.ly/2NTAWO8, but the 3 main points are detailed below:
1. There are currently 420,000 car tests in the backlog and the national average waiting time for a driving test is 17 weeks
2. We know this will pose challenges for everyone in the coming weeks. We’ll do all we can to reduce the backlog safely and as quickly as possible to help the driver training industry recover. We plan to do this by testing as many people as we can, as soon as we can
3. We are also planning to run a campaign to encourage learners to take their test only when they are confident they can pass. This will help them to avoid a lengthy wait for a retest and help us by not adding to the backlog of tests

On you first lesson back, the paperwork and checks will continue for the time being, as will practices inside the car

Steve

t. 07736389636

[email protected]

UPDATE 16/03/2021 Restart on the 12th April

Lesson re-start is still on schedule for Monday 12th April, pending no further conditions being imposed by the government

Rescheduling the lesson diary to get everyone back up and running as soon as possible after this date is going to be the next challenge, therefore I would like to ask everyone to make contact by email, SMS or call with your availability for lessons as soon as possible (bear in mind the more availability you have, the easier it will be fit you and everybody else in)

For my part, I will look to increase the number of lesson slots available if necessary. Longer daylight hours are one of the factors making this possible, but the current hygiene regime will remain in place for now. I have sourced, but not yet been able to test, a new solution for the fogging machine I use to sanitize the airways in the car, which claims to work for 48hrs. I am awaiting guarantees from the manufacturer that substantiate their claims that this time period is effective

Finally, for those of you with re-arranged test dates. I know this has been a very frustrating time for you, but we have always been constrained by government advice and the actions of the DVSA regarding tests. Your test bookings are now around JUNE/JULY time. I always plan for and hope everyone gets through their driving test first time and do everything possible to ensure you are well prepared for it, but it is a stark fact that nationally, more than 50% of driving tests result in a failure. If anyone is unfortunate enough to be in this group, the estimated waiting list for another attempt is OCT/NOV as the waiting list for tests is currently 4 months and this will get longer when the DVSA open up the system for new bookings

The same is true for all new driving test bookings, so for the foreseeable future, the earliest anyone can expect a test booking will currentlly be around 4 months+, and remember that you are not eligible to book until you have passed your theory test, so for those of you who haven't yet done so, make passing your theory test as soon as possible, or you might have to buy me a Xmas card :)

Steve

t. 07736389636

[email protected]

UPDATE 23/02/2021 Driving Lessons and Testing Restart Details

Yesterday, the government announced details of the proposed lifting of the current lockdown measures, the first of which was that children and students would resume their education from Monday 8th March with some additional minor measures regarding social interaction on 29th March

Further structured easings are planned for April 12, May 17 and June 21 and the finer details of what and who is to be included on these dates are widely available on the internet, what concerns us here, is which date will apply to us regarding driving lessons and testing

Obviously, we would hope to be able to resume normal working practices on April 12th. As yet, there is no definitive clarification on this, but we hope it will not be too long before this is confirmed. It is worth remembering that these proposed dates are conditional that nothing changes to affect the continued improvement in the overall situation

I would be obliged if all current clients would contact me to confirm that they are aware of the planned resumption of training which I am targetting for Monday April 12th, unless or until information to the contrary is received

Steve

21st Century Driving

t. 07736389636

[email protected]

UPDATE 28/01/21

Hello Everyone

Disappointingly, I have spent yet another morning dealing with driving test cancellations up to and including 16th February. With the system closed it is now a matter of waiting for the DVSA to notify us of the new test appointments. They appear to be doing this in 3-week blocks, I have no idea why, but if you have a test booked between 22nd February and 12th March Prepare yourself to receive a cancellation notification sometime within the next 3 weeks

Yesterday, the PM announced that the next Government review would be on 22nd February with a view to re-opening schools on 8th March at the earliest, providing statistical targets have been met. This does not mean that driving lessons and tests will automatically restart on that date. We will have to wait for further information on that one

It is possible that when the national restrictions are lifted, we may be put back into the tier system. If that turns out to be the case, lessons and tests would not be allowed in tier 4 areas, or indeed for candidates living in tier 4 areas but tested from tier 3 test centres

I will, of course keep you updated as further information becomes available

Stay safe

Steve

[email protected]

07736389636

UPDATE 18/01/21

Hello Everyone

Not much to report since the last update. Driver training still CANNOT go ahead, therefore ALL lessons and tests remain suspended until the current restrictions are lifted. The DVSA appear to be cancelling and rescheduling currently booked tests on a weekly basis and this will probably continue for the forseeable future

I am available to speak to should anyone wish to discuss their own position in more detail, otherwise please bookmark and revisit this page to keep up to date with any further developments

Keep safe

Steve

[email protected]

07736389636

The situation will be reviewed based on the next government review due on 18/02/21

Hello Everyone

Yesterdays announcement by the Prime Minister was not unexpected, in fact most of the country seemed to be calling for the full national lockdown (Tier 5) we now find ourselves in. This means driver training CANNOT go ahead, therefore ALL lessons and tests are suspended until restrictions are lifted

This morning, the test booking systems (theory and practical) are unavailable for bookings and movements, therefore we can only wait for any news on test reallocations to come through from the DVSA. It is frustrating for us all, but please take some comfort in the knowledge that we are all in the same boat, and these measures are designed for the safety of all of us, and are out of our control

Please revisit this page to keep up to date with the situation as it develops

Best regards

Steve

[email protected]

07736389636

UPDATE 31/12/20

Hello Everyone

After the announcement yesterday by the Health Secretary, we will NOT be resuming general driving lessons on 4th Jan 2021 as we had hoped. Lesson availability will be closely restricted to those with immediate test bookings as detailed below. We will review this on 14th January or when the government has its next update. I appreciate that being in NE Lincolnshire, we are not strictly in Tier 4, but it is close, too close to ignore. 3 current pupils live outside of NE Lincs, and I myself live less than 2 miles from the 'border'

So, for the protection of all, I have decided not to become the contact point between 17 people who would not otherwise have any connection to each other and maintain lesson suspension for an additional 2 weeks (18/01/21)

I understand that this will disappoint everyone, including myself, but the situation is such that we are surrounded by tier 4 areas and infections are still rising, and with the positive news of a second viable vaccine becoming available in the new year, now is not the time to rush back into things

The EXCEPTIONS are those of you who have current and active test bookings within the next 6 weeks. If you are in this ‘test’ category, please call me urgently to discuss your test preparation and lesson schedules (07736389636). 

The situation will be reviewed based on the next government review due on 14/01/21

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So why not restart lessons now?

These images might help you to understand this decision, which was made at the end of the November lockdown and has not changed. Tier 3 did not meet the requirements of our risk assessment that lessons have been delivered under since August, the situation remains the same

The bordering Tier 4 area (East Lindsey) surrounds NE Lincs, which is effectively Grimsby, Cleethorpes and Immingham. It is an arbitrary line which the virus neither recognizes nor respects. For example, Tetney (Tier 4) Humberston (Tier 3), Riby (Tier 4) Laceby (Tier 3), Holton-le-Clay (Tier 4) Waltham (Tier 3). 

Grimsby and Cleethorpes is the second most densely populated part of the 2nd largest county in the country, and no algorythm or government slide is needed to know that local infection rates are now under severe pressure and we all need to be extremely careful

Stay safe, and please contact me if you have any questions

Steve

21st Century Driving

07736389636

[email protected]

https://www.facebook.com/drivinginstructorgrimsby

Hello Everyone,

There has been some clarity in the last few days as to what life after Lockdown:2 will look like in our area from next Wednesday however as of 1000 this morning, the DVSA have issued no guidance regarding driving lessons

Both Lincolnshire and The Humber have been placed in Tier 3, (very high risk), to be reviewed every 14 days. While this does not specifically preclude driving lessons from taking place, neither does it mean that it would be safe to do so, therefore lessons will not resume until such guidance has been received

I have spent the last 4 weeks considering what would be the best and safest thing to do for all, should we end up in Tier 3, and to be honest it has not been easy. Those of you with driving tests that have been cancelled, rescheduled and shuffled around, there is no urgent need to resume lessons immediately and all test candidates have agreed their lesson plans

I have considered everyone's needs and have decided that with a 5 day period at Xmas where we can mix with family, I personally would need 5 clear days before and after to ensure I was 'clear', meaning there would be no lessons between 18th Dec and 2nd January

So, if we were to restart lessons after the 2nd December, there would only be 2 weeks of training before another break, making it unrealistic and low value

It makes sense therefore, to keep things simple and to delay the restart of lessons until the New Year commencing on 4th January. This will enable us all to plan ahead and protect those of us that work in health and care (and their clients)

I hope you all can appreciate that this is in everyone’s best interests and whatever comes in the New Year, it has to be better than this one

As always, I am available for any questions you may have

Steve – 21st Century Driving

07736389636

[email protected]

07736389636

[email protected]

https://www.facebook.com/drivinginstructorgrimsby

Hi Everyone,

Let's open on a positive note, The Parallel Park and Pull up on the right multiview videos have been completed and uploaded onto the manoeuvres page in the training centre. This completes the set, and hopefully will gives the test candidates among you something else to help with your revision

It has been all quiet from the DVSA, but the rumour mill is rife. We can only plan to the current facts

At the moment, lessons are set to resume nationally on Thursday 3rd December, and barring any new dealine or extension to the current lockdown conditions, we will resume lessons from the regular bookings on that date. I will be contacting you all during next week to discuss your training plans moving forward through Xmas and the New Year (I normally take 2 weeks off, but feel keen to get back in the car on lessons. Can't think why :)

Keep using of the online resources: https://www.21stcenturydriving.co.uk/learners.html during lockdown, and I will be in touch next week

Stay safe, speak soon

Steve

21st Century Driving

07736389636

[email protected]

https://www.facebook.com/drivinginstructorgrimsby

Hello Everyone,

Nothing much has changed in the last 7 days. All we can do is to stick to the government guidelines and wait this lockdown out

There are currently no driving tests on the system in Grimsby so those of you with tests booked do not currently have the option to move them. Theory tests are available in January 2021. If you have yet to take your theory test, you might want to consider getting one booked as you will still have 2 months to study and practice. The booking fee is £23 and can be made on the direct link HERE

Please remember to make use of the online resources: https://www.21stcenturydriving.co.uk/learners.html during lockdown, and I will be available during the week (0800 to 1800 please) on any of the usual contacts to talk, or answer an queries you may have

Keep safe, see you soon

Steve

21st Century Driving

07736389636

[email protected]

https://www.facebook.com/drivinginstructorgrimsby

UPDATE - 07/11/20

Hello Everyone,

Here we are again, Lockdown#2 it seems to be called

For those who started their lessons in the brief period we were delivering lessons, welcome to the Covid-19 bulletin page, which will be updated every weekend (hopefully Saturdays), and to my loyal long-standing clients, welcome back

The current situation is that ALL lessons are currently suspended and will stay that way until 2nd December at the earliest. Knowing this, current affected test candidates have had their test dates re-arranged by agreement BEFORE the DSVA shut down access to their bookings. This was to ensure suitable replacement dates that we could plan towards, rather than the random allocation by the DVSA, some of which were at short notice last time

Would everyone please note that, as before, when we restart lessons, we will give priority lesson bookings to those of you with tests booked. Don’t worry, there will be enough slots available for you all as I have also suspended new starters until we see how the restart goes, it’s just that  IF  the   2nd Dec  date is pushed back, and it is my belief that it will, there may be limited time available for the test candidates to prepare

Finally, those of you yet to pass your theory tests, please make every effort to be ready to book a test as soon as the system re-opens. There is almost certainly going to be a waiting list, which will be the biggest factor in the overall length of your training programme

Please make use of the online resources: https://www.21stcenturydriving.co.uk/learners.html during lockdown, and I will be available during the week (0800 to 1800 please) on any of the usual contacts to talk, or answer an queries you may have

Keep safe, and hopefully I will see you very soon

Steve

21st Century Driving

07736389636

[email protected]

https://www.facebook.com/drivinginstructorgrimsby

RETURN TO LOCKDOWN - 05/11/2020

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    On Saturday 31/10/2020 the Prime Minister announced that England would be returning to a nationwide lockdown for 4 weeks

    The effect on driver training and testing was confirmed yesterday (02/11/2020) by the DVSA in an announcement that "Driver and rider training and testing will be suspended in England from 5 November to 2 December 2020"

    This is a clear directive and is not open to mis-interpretation. So, all lessons and tests will stop effective 00:01 on 05/11/2020 and WILL NOT resume until 00:01 on 03/12/2020 at the earliest

    There are no exceptions. We will, of course be adhering to this directive as issued by the driving instructors governing body. Please feel free to contact us through the usual channels if you require any further information.     Thanks,  Steve

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      Our hygiene protocols were written along the same lines as our comprehensive car maintenance program. That is to be in the best condition we can present it for lessons, hence it is looked after under contract by the local Ford dealership

      When it comes to hygiene, we adopt the same ethos and aim to be the best we can be. Our financial investment in equipment to achieve this was considerable, but necessary. The more costly, and ongoing investment is in time. The cleaning process we use takes 1½ hours to thoroughly clean and sanitise the car. Two 15 minute travel windows bring the hygiene slot up to 2 hours. For more details, click here

       

      Our new working practices mean that we only schedule 2 x 2hr lessons daily from Monday to Friday at 0930 and 1330 (Other lesson times may be available (at a premium rate), but all will be for a minimum of 2 hours to make the 2 hour preparation window viable). This is to ensure that we have time for a thorough cleaning and sanitising protocol between EVERY LESSON

      It is a decision that has not been taken lightly, but with only the vaguest guidelines issued by the professional and government bodies, our "belt and braces" approach (which includes a sanitising fogging procedure) is to the highest standard we can achieve. What others do doesn't concern us

      As always we strive to be the best we can be in all aspects of our business giving you the best and safest value for money driving lessons in the area

      Steve Thompson - 21st Century Driving

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