Plans to house Cannock's old driving test centre in community building take step forward
Plans to house Cannock's scrapped driving test centre in a community building have taken a step forward.
Campaigners are desperate to retain a test centre in the area and have approached the DVSA about setting up at Pye Green Community Centre. Another option previously discussed was Hednesford Library.
The decision to close Cannock's test centre at the town's fire station has sparked a backlash among instructors and means learners will now have to travel to Lichfield or Featherstone to take tests.
Hednesford Town Council has been working with campaigners, driving instructors and representatives from the DVSA to find a solution which will bring driving test back to the district and save long journeys out of the area for students.
And the town council has now made an offer to host a driving test centre at Pye Green Community Centre at its recent meeting where representations were received from the driving instructors’ association highlighting the need for a local facility serving the community.
Local campaigner and driving instructor Chris Scott-Douglas said: “With the backing of the ADI National Joint Council and support from Hednesford Town Council we proactively searched for a legitimate solution to the closure of Cannock Test Centre.
"Armed with this we were able to question the DVSA’s actions (or inactions), which eventually led to the offer being made at the Pye Green Community Centre.
“As chairman of the South Staffordshire Association of Driving Instructors, I speak on behalf of all my colleagues in thanking Hednesford Town Council for their help and support.
"I stress upon the DVSA to accept this offer so testing can commence as soon as possible, which will help keep waiting times for tests to a minimum in the region.”
Chairman of Hednesford Town Council Councillor Paul Woodhead added: “We have been listening to residents and in dialogue with the campaigners since the beginning of the year and working to find a solution that will serve our community and accommodate the needs of the DVSA for a driving test centre.
"The offer we have presented is fair both to the public finances of the town council and the requirements of the DVSA and we are hopeful we can come to an agreement that will see driving tests for students back in the area they live.
“We have done what we can to make this happen and satisfied the requirements of the DVSA. It is up to them now, if they want to serve our community they have this opportunity with us here. There is no reason not to proceed.”
The previous facility provided through the community fire station in Cannock was closed in June. The nearest facilities available are in Lichfield, Stafford and Featherstone.