Introduction of Graduated Driver Licensing and the Review of the Driving Test

We want to cut the number of people killed and injured on our roads. One of our big worries is that 1 in every 5 new drivers has a crash in their first 6 months of driving and generally younger drivers are involved in more crashes than older drivers. To make young drivers safer we must make driver training and testing better.


That is why we are introducing Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) in 2018. GDL will apply to learner and newly qualified drivers and motorcyclists. It is a package of measures designed to provide new drivers with experience and skills, over time, in lower-risk
environments. Throughout this article the term ‘drivers’ includes motorcyclists.

What does GDL mean for learners and newly qualified drivers? A Minimum Learning Period of 6 months – a practical test can’t be taken until a provisional licence has been held for at least 6 months. Removing the 45mph speed limit for learners and newly-qualified drivers.


A Programme of Training for Learners and a Learner Logbook. The Programme, which must be completed and signed off before a practical test can be taken, sets out all the things that a learner must know to be a good and a safe driver. Passenger Restriction for Newly Qualified Drivers.

For the first 6 months after passing the practical test a newly qualified driver will be restricted to carrying one passenger aged 14-20, although they can carry any number of passengers outside this age range. This restriction only applies between 11pm and 6am
and does not apply to motorcyclists.


A new Plate (to replace the R plate) and a longer restricted period. The restriction period will increase to two years to tie in with the New Drivers Order. The Programme of Training. The Programme as envisaged has four sections.


Section 1 - Introduction - the Law/ Rules & Regulations relating to learning to drive and the various learning resources available
Section 2 – Skills for Life - the knowledge, understanding, skills and behaviour required to be a safe and responsible driver
Section 3 - Practical Training - the most important behaviours, practical knowledge and driving skills that Learners must have
Section 4 - Logbook - proof that the learner has successfully completed the various parts of the Programme of Training