Gateway to a new career
Having provided driver training for over three decades, Jim Mair has few rivals when it comes to experience and expertise in his field.
Jim’s company, Jim Mair Driver Training Limited, which he runs with his son Neil – who, like Jim, is an experienced Large Goods Vehicle (‘LGV’) instructor – operated for several years from premises in Kilmarnock but moved to Ayr in 2018 when the opportunity to buy a site which had been designed as a driver training centre came up for sale. This site is home not only to the company’s offices but also to an onsite classroom, an indoor forklift training area, a dedicated LGV reversing area used for licence tests, and ample secure storage space for the company’s fleet of training vehicles.
And it’s from here that Jim and his team of instructors provide specialist LGV and forklift training, plus a wide range of other services, all delivered by qualified and experienced instructors.
It’s fair to say that an LGV licence can be a passport to a new career, but how do you obtain one? We asked Jim to take us through the process.
“The first step to take when applying for an LGV licence is to be medically examined, after which, all being well, the next stage is to apply for the provisional licence itself,” explains Jim. “An applicant must thereafter pass theory and hazard perception tests before moving on to practical training, on completion of which the applicant then sits a driving test conducted by a DVSA examiner. We’re able to help applicants right through the process – from booking a medical right through to booking their driving test. We not only provide practical training but, for a small admin fee, we can also help candidates to book a medical and apply for a licence, as well as supplying training material they’ll need to study for the theory test.”
Is there just one type of LGV licence?
“No. There are different categories of LGV licence,” says Jim. “The holder of a category C licence can drive any rigid vehicle, whilst the holder of a category C+E licence is entitled to drive both rigid and articulated vehicles. Once an applicant has passed their theory test, our experienced instructors can provide specialist practical training for both categories of LGV licence using our fleet of training vehicles.”
What does that training involve and how long does it take?
“The process starts with an assessment drive so that an applicant’s level of competence can be assessed. This then determines the personal training programme that we draw up for that applicant. Typically, a person is ready for their LGV licence test after about five days’ training. It all depends on the individual, though, so it can sometimes take a little longer.”
The need for training doesn’t, however, stop once a driver has obtained their LGV licence, as Jim explains:
“Those who drive certain types of vehicles for a living, including LGV drivers, are obliged to obtain a fresh Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) every five years, which means that they have to complete 35 hours of training (which covers a range of topics such as tachographs and driver’s hours, alcohol awareness, and vehicle loading and unloading) in order to be allowed to continue driving that type of vehicle. We provide high-quality CPC training using our dedicated onsite classroom.”
And you also provide forklift and other training as well?
“Yes. We have a dedicated indoor forklift training area and a team of specialist instructors who provide training on counterbalance and reach forklifts as well as pallet trucks. We also provide training on how to safely operate a range of other transport-related machines including HIAB loaders, mobile elevated work platforms, and mini diggers.”
So, if you’re looking for high quality professional driver training delivered by friendly and experienced instructors then all roads lead to Jim Mair Driver Training Ltd.
Jim Mair Driver Training Ltd, 23 Whitfield Drive, Ayr, KA8 9RX