A statement on the proposed closure of the South Shields Driving Test Centre from our campaigner Andrew Guy
28th November 2020
The DVSA has announced it is considering the closure of the South Shields practical testing centre. Meaning students will have to travel to either Sunderland, Gateshead, or Newcastle to take their practical driving test.
I am extremely disappointed that the government is yet again removing services from South Tyneside. They left our professional driving instructors high and dry during the pandemic, and this decision is yet another blow to these self-employed businesses.
For some students, if the DVSA do close our testing centre, will make it that much more difficult to learn how to drive. Now, I know this stance from a Green Party member is unusual, but in its current form, public transport is struggling due to the pandemic and over ten years of cuts from national government. In South Tyneside, many employment opportunities often require travelling outside of public transportation hours.
The government should only consider closing this testing centre once public transportation works for everyone, or it risks causing further financial and social inequality.
A petition has been started by Save South Shields Driving Test Centre – could I ask all concerned residents to sign it, and protect another vital service to our community that is at risk of being lost.