To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of how rural areas will be served by 65 centres for motorcycle testing laid down by the Driving Standards Agency; and when all 65 will be operational.
The Driving Standards Agency (DSA) balances offering a satisfactory level of service to candidates in rural as well as urban areas with the resulting costs. The introduction of a modular test and the use of occasional sites have allowed DSA to provide practical motorcycle tests from more service points. This has benefited candidates in rural areas.
The practical motorcycle test is now delivered in two modules. Module 1 (the specified manoeuvres test) can be taken at 66 testing facilities and module 2 (the general on-road ride) is offered at 105 permanent locations and 30 occasional centres mainly in rural Scotland. As a consequence, 88 per cent of module 1 candidates and 97 per cent of module 2 candidates can reach a test centre within 45 minutes or 20 miles, which are our service criteria.
DSA is currently at various stages of acquisition and construction of multi purpose test centres at 16 locations and it is likely to take up to a further two years before all are operational.