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Continued learning

Online learning offers superb opportunities for people to do courses and webinars.

As it stands, we are all a couple of weeks into this lockdown period and it is an ideal time to maximise learning opportunities while staying safe at home.  As can be seen here, owner of BIG TOM, Tom Ingram completed a First Aid Awareness online course specifically aimed for when he is providing driving training in the car.

BIG TOM can also provide online learning at this time, for free, to help people learning to drive.  The subjects covered include:

Theory and Hazard Perception Test training

Use of videos to help with reversing manoeuvres

Theory of approaching roundabouts, reading traffic signs, identifying hazards, assessing the correct speed to drive at

…… and lots more.

These online sessions also offer the opportunity for pupils and parents to ask a qualified DVSA driving instructor questions relating to the suspension of driving lessons due to this lockdown.

Interested?  ‘Like’ the BIGTOM.org.uk facebook page to get instant notifications of free online training that you can attend.  This opportunity is open to all.

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Learning to drive questions

In this period of downtime, BIG TOM is offering free live question and answer zoom sessions.

This is a fabulous opportunity for learners to continue their campaign of learning to drive.  Included in these sessions are real DVSA video clips of the hazard perception test.  Also, there are authentic DVSA theory questions and answers.  But, at this time of lockdown, this is a superb opportunity to get general questions answered about driving test and theory test availability, when driving lessons can start again and much more.

Check out the BIG TOM facebook pages here and here to book in.

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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We are now closed

With the Government announcement today regarding COVID-19 we are now closed.

Existing BIG TOM customers and any new enquiries please feel free to use the number below, or email info@bigtom.org.uk

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Carry on driving

BIG TOM continues as usual with in-car driving training.

There has been much news of late regarding the taking of tests in the industry but rest assured customers are still able to benefit from BIG TOM in-car driving training.  As long as it remains safe and legal, we will continue to allow our customers to carry on driving.

There is no room for complacency which is why BIG TOM introduced heightened hygiene controls when training two weeks ago.  It is a 1:1 working environment and as long as instructor and pupil take responsibility for maintaining hygiene standards then BIG TOM is happy to continue.

We continue to offer intensive driving courses these coming two weekends as well as the coming week.  Clearly, we will all have to be guided by the DVSA regarding the timing of taking tests and exemptions for critical workers.  If customers remain flexible in this regard, then the actual in-car driving training provided by BIG TOM proves to be the perfect opportunity for people who want to learn to drive.

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Practical test cancellations

We have another update for BIG TOM customers regarding practical driving tests.

The DVSA have notified us today that practical tests are now cancelled for up to 3 months from 21/02/2020 due to the COVID-19 situation.  The exception is for tests reserved for ‘critical workers’ which will still go ahead.  These include:

  • health and social care
  • education and childcare
  • key public services
  • local and national government
  • food and other necessary goods
  • public safety and national security
  • transport
  • utilities, communication and financial services

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 07498364211 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Theory test cancellations

We have another update for BIG TOM customers regarding theory tests.

The DVSA have notified us today that theory tests are now cancelled up to 20/04/2020 due to the COVID-19 situation.  Any notices that have come through to BIG TOM Admin will get forwarded to our customers.  The refunds will be received and re-utilised once another booking is made.

BIG TOM Admin Customer Support Line: 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Driving test pass rates Dec 2019

Today the DVSA have released* the very latest driving test and theory test pass rates across the UK (up to December 2019)

The overall driving test pass rate is 46%, and the theory test is marginally higher at 47%.  More people continue to pass their driving test on their second attempt:

male(%):    1st 50.3  2nd 50.6  3rd 49.9

female(%): 1st 42.9  2nd 43.8  3rd 43

* DVSA publishings: DRT0201/0102/0202

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Customer update 19032020

The DVSA have informed the industry that all driving tests and theory tests across the UK are cancelled today and tomorrow. BIG TOM Admin continues to assure customers that there will be no financial penalties to customers in these times of the COVID-19. There will always be alternative dates made available at some time. In the interests of safety, it is far better for there to be open communication between BIG TOM, pupils and the DVSA. The responsibility for ensuring everyone is fit and well prior to in-car training lies with all the parties involved.

As ever, if you have any questions, feel free to email us on admin@bigtom.org.uk or call direct on the Customer Support Line 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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BIG TOM Support

BIG TOM Admin are maintaining a close ear to all that is occurring in the industry.  Customers can keep up to date via this blog and our social media outlets on facebook and twitter.

At this stage we are continuing to run our business as usual.  We have been quick to incorporate some additional safety practices into our in-car training service delivery.  The details of these have been updated on this blog for all our customers to see and we hope acts as reassurance that we continue to take the safety of our customers as our number one priority.

News is coming in of some closures to the smaller driving test centres across the country due to low examiner numbers but as it stands today, all BIG TOM driving test centres continue to run as normal.  We would like to make it clear to customers that should there be an interruption to driving tests due to centre closures, customers will remain top priority for us and we will maintain the best service possible by obtaining new test slots when centres re-open.

As ever, if you have any questions, feel free to email us on admin@bigtom.org.uk or call direct on the Customer Support Line 0800 689 4174 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

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Hygiene Standards While Training

BIG TOM Admin have released the following information in light of recent Government updates regarding Coronavirus

BIG TOM is committed to maintaining the highest hygiene standards possible while conducting in-car driving training.  Having sought independent, professional advice, intensive driving course training is being conducted within the systems and protocols of the BIG TOM Driving School COVID-19 Driving Training Strategy.

Instructor and pupil hygiene is of the utmost importance.  At the start of all in-car training sessions, refrain from handshakes, and clean hands and all car controls with the anti-bacterial wipes provided.  Use of contactless forehead thermometers are available for pupil and instructor to check prior to the start of training.  There are also at least two packs of tissues available onboard.  Vehicles are subject to routine deep cleans.  Where possible, we ask all occupants to make attempts to safely pull over the car for any coughing/sneezing outside the car.  We understand that this may not always be possible.  Hourly pauses in training for ventilation and cleaning of vehicle.  We also have no use of air conditioning and keeping the inside of the car ventilated with fresh air by open rear windows.  Upholstery will continue to be deep-cleaned on a weekly basis.

We undertake pre-training health screening in order to conduct our COVID-19 Risk Assessment Framework Matrix.  GDPR rules are strictly complied to.

Regarding the taking of tests, the DVSA are advising cancelling tests should instructor or candidate have symptoms of: cough, high temperature or loss of smell/taste.  The cancellation of tests within the three day short notice period is being granted for this purpose and rest assured BIG TOM Admin will continue to assist BIG TOM customers.

A complete breakdown of the BIG TOM Driving School COVID-19 Driving Training Strategy is available on request.

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