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Driving Standards Agency

Volume 522: debated on Wednesday 26 January 2011

10. What recent discussions he has had with the Driving Standards Agency on its operations in Scotland. (35133)

I have had no such discussions with the agency. However, the hon. Gentleman will know from the Westminster Hall debate that he secured on the proposed closure of Arbroath and Forfar driving test centres that the Under-Secretary of State for Transport, my hon. Friend the Member for Hemel Hempstead (Mike Penning) has agreed to look further into the arrangements surrounding driving test centre closures.

The Minister is obviously aware that local driving test centres in rural areas such as Angus are being closed without any consultation whatever, with services moved to multi-purpose test centres. Does he accept that this is an unacceptable way for a Government agency to act? Will he press the Secretary of State for Transport, who I notice is sitting two along from him on the Front Bench, to impose a moratorium on closures until, at the very least, there is adequate consultation with local communities before the removal of such important services?

I commend the hon. Gentleman for his diligence in pursuing this issue, as he also did in his Westminster Hall debate. He knows that the Transport Minister took away the issues that he raised in that debate and agreed to look into them.