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Chislehurst Driving School


Driving Tests

Category -> driving tests

Here is the latest government statement on driving tests:


https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-driving-tests-and-theory-tests

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 3 weeks ago

Back on the road

Category -> South London

I started teaching again yesterday. It was really great to be back on the road after nearly four months off. The wind deflectors I've had fitted to the car worked brilliantly, so we were able to drive with the windows open throughout without annoying drafts or noise. This means the air in the car is kept fresher and healthier. Face coverings were worn by all without any fuss which was much appreciated. Hopefully things will keep improving and we're on the road to normality.


More good news is that Charlton Lido has reopened :)

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 3 weeks ago

Coronavirus - driving tests

Category -> driving tests

If you have symptoms of Coronavirus you MUST change your driving test appointment. Advice here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-driving-tests-and-theory-tests#cancel-or-rearrange-your-test-if-you-have-coronavirus-symptoms



Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 4 months ago

Charlton Lido

Category -> South London

When I'm not driving around South London I'm swimming around South London. We're spoiled for pools here. My favourite is Charlton Lido. Also in South London are Crystal Palace 50m pool, Brockwell Lido, Tooting Bec Lido, Beckenham Place Park swimming lake. I also like to swim at Leybourne Lakes, near Maidstone. You can park easily and for free at most of these places.

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Show me, Tell me - questions

Category -> Show me, tell me questions

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Driving Test Day

Category -> driving tests

So, it's the day of your driving test. What should you expect? What do you need to bring? How long will it all take?


Driving tests can begin at peculiar times. For example, 10.44 or 12.38. This is to maximise the amount of time examiners have to process their paperwork and conduct the examination. Most learners use their instructor's car for the test and if this is the case I will pick up one hour before the start time.


You need to bring your provisional licence. You are also requested by the DVSA to bring along your theory test pass certificate.


The hour before the test is used to warm up and rehearse any driving test exercises you may asked to do. We generally also go over the show and tell questions.


You are asked not to arrive at the test centre more than 5/10 minutes before the start time. Once the car is parked we'll walk to the test centre waiting room where there is a toilet and some seats.


The examiner will enter the waiting room at the start time and call out the name they have on their marking report. If this is you they'll then ask to see your licence and you will sign a declaration that your car is insured and that you are a UK resident. They will ask if you would like your instructor/companion to sit in the back as an observer, and to attend the debrief at the end of the test.


After that, the examiner will walk with you to the car park, check your eyesight and then you'll be asked a car safety question.


Once you're in the car and comfortable the examiner will chat to you about what to expect. You may be asked to bay park at the beginning of the test.


And then you'll go for a drive. After 35-40 minutes you'll return to the test centre. The examiner will offer you some feedback and present you with a certificate if you have passed. Then your instructor will drive you home, say goodbye, and wipe tears of happiness from their eyes. The whole process takes between two and two and a half hours.

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

It's raining (again)

Category -> practical advice

It feels like it's rained every day for six months. Here is the important information about driving in the rain.

  • Make sure your tyres have more than the legal tread depth (minimum is 1.6mm)
  • Clean your wipers regularly by running a clean cloth down the blades to remove the black gunk which builds up
  • Keep the screenwash reservoir topped up
  • Keep the insides of the windows clean (I use a microfibre cloth to remove dust). Use the A/C to keep condensation under control.
  • Keep AT LEAST four seconds back from the vehicle in front
  • Look out for large puddles and do your best to avoid splashing pedestrians
  • Look out for pedestrians who have hoods up and aren't look at the road properly
  • Look out for cyclists who may take avoiding action from puddles at the edge of the road

Always drive to the conditions.


Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Doorstep Bakery

Category -> South London

Whenever I'm giving driving lessons in Brockley I stop in to the doorstep bakery. It's the best value for money sandwich shop in South East London. The tuna mayo roll is huge so I need to be careful. If I eat too much at lunch I get sleepy on my afternoon lesson.


Driving tip: Never have a big meal before a long drive. It makes you sleepy.

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Ollie's fish and chips

Category -> South London


Nothing to do with driving, but I had fish and chips at Ollie's Fish Experience in Herne Hill on Saturday evening and it's highly recommended.


Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Car park skills

Category -> manoeuvres

To prepare for your driving test you will need to spend a bit of time in car parks. The current practical test features two car park manoeuvres: forwards bay parking and reverse bay parking. There is lots of information on the internet about how to bay park, and my customers can log in for course handouts and scanned copies of text books. However, as well as the actual manoeuvres, here are some thoughts about how learners could improve their general car park skills



Enter the car park carefully

Many new drivers rush into car parks, and before they've had a chance to look for spaces they have already driven past several. Enter car parks with caution, consider a short pause to look for spaces and pedestrians, and think ahead about where you might park.You might find first gear is the most suitable option when looking for a space.


Signals

Treat junctions in car parks like all other junctions. Give way where you can't see properly, signal your intentions in good time, and be clear about what you are doing. If you want to stop the car, check the mirror, and consider the car park users behind you. Allow other vehicles to pass if you can. Signal to enter a parking space and also to leave a parking space, (if another car park user would benefit from seeing it).


Allow room to manoeuvre

If you're parking forwards, give yourself enough room to swing the car round. For example, if you're parking to the right, keep well to the left. This will help allow room for the front corner of the car to enter the parking bay without encroaching on neighbouring bays.

If you're parking in reverse, allow room for the front of the car to swing out.


Slow car, quick steering

Sometimes you will need to steer fully while moving the car only a few centimetres. Make sure you are able to control the clutch so that you can manoeuvre without lurching too much. It takes a bit of practice but once you can keep the vehicle at 'zimmer frame' speed and steer quickly and smoothly, manoeuvring in car parks becomes a breeze.


Give other drivers time and space

Other drivers need room to park and space to think. Please don't drive up close behind other vehicles. Anticipate their intentions and always try your best to be patient, kind and understanding.

Chislehurst Driving School Blog
Posted by Neil - 5 months ago

Mounts Pond Rd

Category -> junctions

The Junction of Mounts Pond Rd and St Austell Rd in Blackheath can be a bit confusing if you're seeing it for the first time.