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Scottish Transport Minister to push for Graduated Driver Licensing Scheme

Graduated driver licensing is on the agenda again, this time in Scotland. Book Theory Test Today looks at the latest news emerging from north of the border.

Book Theory Test Today says: “It’s looking more and more likely that graduated driver licensing will be introduced in the near future. It’s a topic that won’t go away and has received plenty of coverage on our blog and Scotland is the latest UK country to be making noises about the scheme.”

Who in Scotland is making noises about graduated driver licensing?

Derek Mackay, the Scottish Transport Minister, has pledged to push the UK government on a decision to pilot graduated driver licensing in Scotland.  

Why all the fuss about graduated driver licensing?

The scheme is mainly being urged by road safety campaigners, who say that graduated driver licensing is already in operation in countries around the world and saving lives. Campaigners say that the scheme should be introduced in the UK to tackle the risks associated with new and young motorists.

Urgent meeting    

Now, Labour MSP David Stewart has urged Mr Mackay to request an urgent meeting with Patrick McLoughlin, the Secretary of State for Transport, to discuss piloting the scheme.

Stewart has raised the issue at Holyrood prior to the publication of official road casualty statistics for 2014, which is due to be published in June.

Referring to data in the publication, Mr Stewart said that the information indicates that road deaths have increased by seven compared with 2013-2014, with an increase in the number of motorcyclist and pedestrian fatalities.

Mr Stewart asked: “Will the minister [Derek Mackay] seek an urgent meeting with Patrick McLoughlin, the Secretary of State for Transport, and support my bid for Scotland to pilot the graduated scheme within the UK?”


One of the biggest advocates of graduated driver licensing, road safety charity, Brake has recommended a graduated driver licensing scheme that requires a minimum 12 month learning period, increased to two years for a ‘novice driver’. This would feature certain restrictions, including a ban on motorway driving.

Mr Mackay said: “I would be happy to continue our efforts with the UK Government to promote the scheme, and I will be more than happy to pilot it in Scotland. If the Labour Party wants to assist us on that with others, then I will happily take a cross-party approach and be more than happy to try and progress this once again.”

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