December 7 2013 Latest news:
Dominic Bareham, senior reporter
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
A teenage driving school pupil from Norfolk showed previous students a clean set of wheels by becoming the first driver at her school to pass without making a fault.
Alice Knights, 18, of Lark Rise, Mulbarton completed her practical driving test from the test centre at Broadlands Business Park in Norwich on June 15 without making even a minor fault, becoming the first student in the eight year history of Ellen Driving Tuition in Hethersett to accomplish the feat.
She said: “I was so surprised when I got back to the test centre because I genuinely thought I had failed. Then when my instructor said I did not have any faults, I could not believe it.”
The excited City of Norwich School sixth form pupil then rang her mum Sue, 50 and dad Gerald, 44 to tell them the good news before returning to her school.
However, she feared she had made mistakes during an arduous test around the outskirts of Norwich, which was followed by a 10 minute independent drive where she had to follow signs to get to the city’s airport, before driving into the busy city centre and then returning to the test centre on the A1042.
At one point, she said a fellow motorist pulled out in front of her, causing her to panic slightly though her fears the incident had cost her were allayed when she got back to the test centre.
Now she plans to take her Fiat Punto on visits to family and friends in the Norfolk area, including her aunt who lives near Wingfield and she is hoping to study primary education at Leeds University, with a possible gap year in Australia beforehand.
Hester Jimpson, who runs Ellen Driving Tuition, said Alice started in October and did one two-hour driving lesson a week with her, though she did extra driving with her family in the run up to her exam.
She said as well as passing her practical, Alice also got 49 out of 50 questions right in her multiple choice test and 60 out of 75 questions correct in her hazard perception exam.
She added all of her previous 122 students had made at least one minor fault during the practical test.
“This is the Holy Grail of all driving instructors and this is my first one so I am very proud of her success,” Hester said.