Monthly Archives: May 2009

May 31, 2009
Best Driving School Website

Britannia has received the ultimate accolade for its website from a non member of Britannia Driving School.

Jahanghir Khan (not a pupil of Britannia Driving School) said: “The best driving school website. You go out of your way to help non members of Britannia Driving School by giving loads of advice and free theory tests and loads more. I would love to take driving lessons with Britannia, but I can’t because I live outside the area you cover. X”

Simon Bush of Britannia Driving School said: “Unlike other driving school websites we provide free driving school resources-at a great expense to Britannia- such as: Theory Test, Hazard Perception Test, Eyesight Test and much more. These free resources can be accessed by all learner drivers’- not just Britannia Driving School pupils-without the need to give any personal details or information about themselves. No password or username is required to access our free resources”


May 28, 2009
OFT targets car sales scammers

You advertise your car for sale e.g for £4,000. Someone calls out of the blue saying they have a “guaranteed buyer” for your car at £5,000: all you have to do is send £99 to the firm, which will then put you in contact with the purchaser. But there is no buyer and your cash disappears into a swindler’s bank account.

Welcome to the “vehicle matching scam”, which costs car, motorcycle, and mobility chair sellers at least £3m a year.

“High pressure selling alongside cold calling makes this a very successful scam, often leaving the consumer with very little chance of obtaining redress,” Peter Stratton of the Trading Standards Institute said.

Last year more than 1,600 private sellers of second-hand cars complained to Consumer Direct about the practice, but the Office of Fair Trading estimates the true number of victims is much higher.

From today the OFT, the police, Trading Standards and the car industry will collaborate to drive the scammers out. The OFT will co-ordinate the sharing of intelligence between different enforcement agencies to target action against traders engaged in unfair commercial practices such as matching scams.

The OFT is also working with online and print motoring publications that are members of the Vehicle Safe Trading Advisory Group, including Autotrader, Exchange & Mart, eBay, Pistonheads and, to put in place clear and prominent warnings about these scams for consumers. The UK European Consumer Centre, European Consumer Centre, Dublin, and Which? are also supporting the campaign.


May 27, 2009
3 Motoring Risks To Avoid

Below are 3 tips which, if you can avoid, will help you be a more safe and sensible driver:

1.    Using Your Mobile While Driving
If you are spotted on the phone while driving your vehicle you will receive penalty points and a fine, this may also affect your car insurance for as much as three years!

2.    Putting Your Foot Down
Today’s roads are busy and heavily congested, pedestrians tend to walk out between gaps of cars into busy roads with little caution, speed limits are in place to help you detail with such a situation should it arise.

Don’t forget with the many speed cameras now in place, you could earn yourself 3 or more penalty points and a fine from £60 upwards, not to mention an increase in insurance premiums for years to come.
3.    Driving Under the influence of alcohol
Laws against drink driving are becoming increasingly stringent, a drink drive sentence could put you in prison for six months, given a minimum year long ban and a fine of £5,000. It is also important to remember that some drink drive offences can stay on your licence for up to 11 years.


May 24, 2009
Speed Camera Chief Banned for Speeding

The chief executive of a speed camera firm has been banned from driving for six months after admitting speeding at more than 100mph on a 70mph road.

Tom Riall is the boss of Serco, which has provided more than 5,000 speed cameras in the UK.

Mr Riall appeared at Sudbury Magistrates’ Court and pleaded guilty to driving at 100mph, he was fined £300, banned from driving for six months and had six points added to his licence.

Outside court, he said: “I accept the decision of the court. I recognise that speeding is not acceptable”

Simon Bush of Britannia Driving School said: “It’s unacceptable for the boss of a company that prides itself on providing “robust evidence of drivers speeding” to be caught speeding at 100mph on a dual carriageway; it’s a case of the gamekeeper becoming the poacher.”

What are your thoughts on this article? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


May 22, 2009
How to Avoid Cloned Cars

People considering buying a used car can avoid clones, it has been claimed. According to auto information group HPI, following a few simple rules could protect drivers from fraudsters.

Cloning occurs when a car is stolen and given an identity that is very similar to one already in circulation. In order to avoid falling foul of this scam, car buyers have been advised to check that all vehicle identity numbers on the model tally.

People should then get HPI to verify the IDs match the registration, the group stated. This service comes with a guarantee that means customers will be reimbursed up to £30,000 if the car in question is not as it should be.

Director Nick Lindsay stated: “By educating consumers to conduct a vehicle history check and proceed with caution, we can help them uncover a fake and walk away.”


May 19, 2009
50% of motorists think they would struggle to pass their driving test if they had to take it again now.

As many as 50% of motorists believe that they would find it difficult to pass their driving test if they had to take it again under today’s modern standards. Research has found that drivers take just a year to forget the key points from the practical and theory parts of the test.

Basic manoeuvres is the first skill to go, while 17% of people forget what they learnt about the Highway Code. People who passed the test between 16 and 25 years ago were most pessimistic about their chances of passing now, with even more (56%) saying they would fail than those who passed 26-50 years ago (55%).

The poll of 2,000 people also showed that nearly one in six motorists has taken a break from driving for more than three years. Moving to an area with good public transport was the main reason to quit driving, followed by a lack of enjoyment of driving and letting a partner take the wheel.

Britannia Driving School offer a range of refresher courses should you not feel confident in your current driving skills, give us a call today on 0800 252 692 to see how we can help you.


May 18, 2009
Over 2,500 Minis Owners celebrate the icons 50th birthday.

After all owners parked bumper to bumper in order to break the world record for the most Minis to be parked together, enthusiasts then drove from London to Brighton.

The popular annual drive which is now in its 46th year of operation, is home to owners of the classic and modern Minis come together to show off their vehicles.

A spokesperson for the event said: “London to Brighton Mini Run is the biggest and best Mini event in the show calendar. “Taking place each May it attracts enthusiasts from all over the world, and it is a fantastic opportunity for owners to show off their pride and joy, and the public to take in the spectacle of around 2,500 Minis as they make the 55 mile pilgrimage.”


May 17, 2009
Drivers Caught Jumping Red Lights are Being Sent on Courses

Drivers caught jumping red traffic lights in London are being sent on courses run by the London Safety Camera Partnership.

Attending the course allows them to avoid paying a £60 fine and getting three points on their licence.

More than 350 people have already been on the course during a trial period. Officials estimate that within its first year, about 1, 200 will choose to pay the £95 fee and attend lessons in Islington, Bromley or Ealing.

If successful, the scheme will go nationwide. New figures show that each week, two people are killed or seriously injured on London’s roads after motorist run traffic lights.

The red-light courses will be offered to drivers at the discretion of the police, depending on the margin by which they overshot the lights.

More serious offenders will not be offered a place and drivers can only attend once in three years.

There are 242 red light cameras in London. Their installation has led to a 53 per cent reduction in the number of people killed or seriously injured at their location.

Simon Bush of Britannia Driving School said: “London roads are getting safer, but the 129 deaths and serious injuries in 2006 caused by red – light jumping demonstrate there is much more to be done.”

What are your thoughts on drivers caught jumping lights being sent on courses instead of being fined and their driving licence endorsed? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below:


May 12, 2009
Drivers punished for offences such as speeding every twelve seconds!

The blitz from cameras, police patrols and parking wardens is netting the state £100million a year in fines.
Recorded offences now top more than 2.39million a year, according to latest figures released following a Freedom of Information request.

They also include illegal parking, jumping traffic lights and not wearing a seatbelt.

Twice as many drivers — 1½million — are fined for speeding as ten years ago, with London’s Met force issuing most tickets.


May 11, 2009
Smart Car to Catch Drivers Breaking the Law

Latest CCTV cars intended to catch drivers using their mobiles or being distracted at the steering wheel are being piloted by Greater Manchester Police.

The Smart cars, which have a 12ft mast with a camera attached, are parked at busy junctions to monitor traffic.

Anyone seen driving while distracted – eating at the steering wheel, playing with the radio or applying make – up for instance – is filmed by the cameras. A letter is then sent to the owner of the car along with a fine.

Anyone caught using their mobile phone will be ordered to pay £60 and have three points added to their licence.

The CCTV cars have already attracted criticism from people who argue they are an infringement of people’s privacy.

Simon Bush of Britannia Driving School said: “CCTV enforcement lacks connection with motorist until after the event and drivers might regard it as an infringement of their privacy.”

What are your thoughts on the use of the Smart Car to catch distracted drivers? Send your views to Britannia Driving School by using the comments link below: