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Frequently Asked Questions

We often get asked about advanced driving, and about our Group, so we have compiled a short list of the most frequently asked questions.

Who are the Northampton Advanced Motorists?
mdu We are one of approximately two hundred local groups around the country affiliated to IAM RoadSmart (formerly The Institute of Advanced Motorists). We are volunteers who give coaching and guidance to aid members of the public to pass the Advanced Driving Test.

We were formed in 1978, and since then have helped over 900 drivers pass the Advanced test.
 
How does it work?
The guidance we give comes in the form of observed drives in your own vehicle accompanied by a Group Observer, who gives the necessary advice and guidance to assist you to achieve the required standard for the test.
 
Do I have to commit straight away?
Before joining us you are invited to take a free no obligation assessment run to find out if you have the potential to become an advanced motorist.
 
How long must I have held a Driving Licence for?
You can start your observed drives as soon as you have passed your driving test. Your licence has to be at least three months old before you can take the actual test.
 
What if I have points on my licence?
If you have up to six points on your licence then there’s no problem. If you have more than six please contact the group secretary as we should still be able to help.
 
How do I start?
Contact our associates officer IAN PHILLIPS on 07967 651820 and arrange for the assessment run at our next meeting. Alternatively you can contact him via email
 
When do the Observed Runs take place?
The drives are held the first Sunday morning of each month, with sessions at 09.30 and 11.00 venue map

If Sundays are not suitable for you please contact Ian Phillips and we will do our best to accommodate you through our 1:2:1 scheme.
 
Are there any age limits?
We have members from 17 to 85. So age is no barrier.
 
Do I need to bring anything with me?
Bring the Associates Log Book, the declaration form must be signed to say that you have a full driving licence, car insurance and MOT (if required). If you have not yet joined and want an Assessment, please can you bring your driving licence and insurance documents. (During all assessment and observed runs the driver remains fully responsible for the safe driving of the vehicle and that it is on the road legally and in a roadworthy condition.)
 
What sort of vehicle can I use?
Any vehicle is suitable for the training and test. Car, van, LGV etc are all suitable.

If you want to take your advanced motorcycle test please contact Dave Harrop (Group Secretary) via email or phone 08700 427648.
 
How long does it take?
The assessment run will take approximately half an hour. This will include pre-run checks of the vehicles lighting, tyres and horn for serviceability and will be followed by a short debrief where the observer will give you an assessment of your driving standard. You will be given a copy of the debrief.
 
How can I join?
On completion of the assessment you will need to fill in an Advanced Driver Course application form and pay the course fee of £149 to join IAM RoadSmart as an associate. This can be done at our display unit after your run, by sending it to: Ann Lancaster, 17 Stanford Way, Northampton NN4 0FQ, or by completing the online form found here.
 
How much do the observed drives cost?
You only pay the one off fee of £149.
 
What do I get for my £149?
You get The Associates Log Book, all the guidance required to enable you to pass the advanced test, your test and the first year’s membership to IAM RoadSmart.
 
How long does it take?
It depends on your current standard of driving but can be as short as 3-4 observed drives. The observed drives are approximately one hour each including the debrief. You will be given a copy of your on-going training record. There is no time limit but we would normally expect the course to last for less than 12 months.
 
Where does it take place?
At the Mereway Police Station car park, Northampton, venue map
 
Who conducts the test?
The test will be conducted by an IAM RoadSmart examiner who will hold the Police Class One driving certificate. (They are all really nice people who want you to pass your test)
 
How long will the test take?
The tests last between an hour and an hour and a half. The examiner will take you on a mixture of roads and test your ability with several manoeuvres. They will include a debrief at the end of the test.
 

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