How the UK driving test has evolved over the last 82 years

Rolls Royce Phantom
If you had some serious money in 1934, the Rolls Royce Phantom was a must-have car for anyone who passed the first driving tests that year. Image by KS-Art (via Shutterstock).

It is hard to imagine a time before the driving test came about in 1934. Or at least a time before we even had driving licences. The UK’s first driving licences were administered in 1903, under the Motor Car Act which was enacted that year. By the late 1920s, accidents on the road reached frightening levels. With safety a major issue (7,000 deaths from road accidents in 1931), The Highway Code was first published. It has been an ever-present in the bestseller list since its first edition, 85 years ago.

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