Drivewise Borders courses on offer for second half of 2017

Ruaridh Fairburn of Eyemouth with his advanced driver pass.

Published: Monday, 31st July 2017

The latest round of courses which aim to keep young and older drivers safe on the Borders’ roads begin in August.

Spaces on the advanced driving course are available for 17 to 25 year olds, while over 65s are invited to attend refresher courses taking place in venues across the Borders.

Drivewise Borders scheme

Both courses are part of Drivewise Borders, a new free scheme which aims to help drivers of all ages become safer on our roads and is funded by the Scottish Road Safety Framework.

The IAM RoadSmart advanced driver scheme, which young drivers can sign up to free of charge thanks to the Framework’s funding, provides participants with skills which 99 per cent of those who sit the course say has improved their driving.

The pioneering project has helped well over 100 young people aged 17 to 25 become safer drivers since it began in April 2014.

Young driver - course dates

Advanced driver scheme dates for remainder of 2017 are:

  • Tuesdays - 22 August; 5 and 19 September; 3 October 2017
  • Sundays - 27 August; 10 and 24 September; 8 October 2017
  • Tuesdays - 17 and 31 October; 14 and 28 November 2017
  • Sundays - 22 October; 5 and 19 November; 3 December 2017
  • Tuesdays - 27 February; 13 and 27 March; 10 April 2018
  • Sundays - 4 and 18 March; 1 and 15 April 2018

Sign up to the course

Older driver - course dates

The older drive scheme allows older drivers to book a 60 to 90 minute practical driving session with an instructor, which is not a test of skills and knowledge but an opportunity to increase confidence and practice any areas that may need updated.

Older driver dates in 2017 are:

  • Newcastleton Village Hall - 2 August, 9.30am
  • Denholm Village Hall - 2 August, 1.30pm
  • Walkerburn Public Hall - 16 August, 9.30am
  • Innerleithen Memorial Hall - 16 August, 1.30pm
  • St Boswells Village Hall - 30 August, 9.30am
  • Newtown St Boswells Community Wing - 30 August, 1.30pm
  • West Linton Graham Institute - 13 September, 9.30am
  • Melrose Corn Exchange - 13 September 1.30pm
  • Tweedbank Eildon Mill - 11 October, 9.30am
  • Duns Southfield Community Centre - 18 October, 10am

There is no need to book up in advance. Get further details.

Drivewise projects for students and pupils

The third project of Drivewise Borders will see hundreds of students aged under 17 from the nine secondary schools in the area visit Charterhall Estate throughout 2017. Having started in April this year, the sessions see pupils gain basic knowledge of driving and road rules through simple manoeuvring of a vehicle, and also instil in them good driving attitudes and habits.

Drivewise Borders partners

Alon with ourselves, partners of Drivewise include:

  • Police Scotland
  • IAM RoadSmart
  • Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
  • Scottish Ambulance Service
  • Transport Scotland
  • John Cleland, former racing champion

Councillor Watson McAteer, Chair of the Police, Fire and Safer Communities Board

“The Council is delighted to be involved in Drivewise Borders and will continue to work with partners to engage with various road user groups of all ages to improve the quality and standard of driving on local roads.”

Chief Inspector Andy McLean, Area Commander for the Scottish Borders

“Drivewise Borders is a fantastic opportunity for members of our community to gain additional, potentially life-saving driving skills for free.

“We would encourage all who are eligible to take up this unique opportunity.”

Sarah Sillars, IAM RoadSmart CEO

“We are proud to be part of  this truly ground-breaking initiative.

“It is crucial that the ‘safe driving is fun’ message is brought into the lives of young people at school age and encouraged as part of the school system.

“Hopefully there are some exciting times ahead for future road safety and lowering the risk for young people.”

Further information

Find out more about Drivewise

Images are available on our Flickr page.