A few years ago whilst driving to Basildon from Wickford in Essex, I noticed how conveniently-situated the two towns are in relation to each other; This has proved to be of great benefit for learner drivers.
First, let’s take a closer look at Wickford, which like the Alsager branch of TRISTAR DRIVING, is also mentioned in the Doomsday Book. Wickford has a very old church that dates back to the Norman times, and it occupies a spot, sitting very proudly on top of the hill as you pass by from the Quart Pot Inn on the A132.
Alternatively, Wickford can be approached from South-Woodham Ferrers, where you follow the A132 –a beautiful country – lane to the town, and this is where Wickford comes into its own.
Traditionally, Wickford has been accessible by rail and as a reminder of Wickford’s railway heritage, there proudly stands an arched, stone railway bridge that’s been in existence since the early 1900’s;
The imaginative amongst us would swear we heard the approaching Express as we passed beneath this relic of Wickford’s history. There are also presently many old photos displayed in the local library of the bridge and how it used to look, back in the days when coal was king yet the railway was undoubtedly the transport of choice, for many who wanted to deliver their goods to market within the UK.
Wickford is ideally situated for pupils, and affords the learner many confidence building “Nursery Routes”, with surrounding country lanes leading to the busy little High Street and then beyond to the busier Dual Carriageway.
The High Street offers numerous opportunities for ‘meeting traffic’ situations and includes a selection of pedestrian crossings, with a mini roundabout leading to the larger Runwell roundabout. Just off the high Street there are additional quieter side roads for the novices to begin their training.
The Wickford area has a kind of natural flow for learning to take place – as if it’s been specially designed with learner pupils in mind; is it any wonder that TRISTAR DRIVING is a popular choice amongst potential new drivers.
When my pupils have mastered basic car control and have tackled the busier areas of Wickford they like to move on to Basildon.
This is very conveniently situated about three miles from Wickford, and again lends itself admirably to learner drivers. I find that my students have no problem negotiating the busier roads in Basildon with its numerous roundabouts and dual carriageways, having first mastered the skills amidst the quieter environment of Wickford, as mentioned previously.
This regularly becomes clear to me from the look on their faces when they realise just what they have safely done and achieved.
Once my learners have acquired their skills, they are then ready to take for test and probably the current favourite amongst recent pupils is in Basildon Multi-Purpose Test Centre on Paycocke Road, where a disabled parking bay is available.
In addition to offering tests for car drivers, Basildon Test Centre also caters for motorcyclists taking either Module One or Two and also conducts Taxi Tests.
The Test Centre is conveniently situated between the A1235 Cranes Farm Road and the A127 Arterial Road.
Little wonder, that the Wickford and Basildon areas are such popular and successful training areas