Gaining HGV entitlement to drive commercially (categories C1 or C) takes somewhere in the region of eight to ten weeks from start to finish. This usually includes everything: initial medical, acquiring your provisional licence, your theory training and testing, and your practical training and testing.

A large portion of this time is spent waiting for the provisional entitlement to be granted, theory test studying and test booking.

Driver CPC became a mandatory requirement for all aspiring and existing professional drivers on September 10th 2009. With the Driver CPC inception came additional tests that must be passed to demonstrate professional competence. How long it takes to train will be determined by whether or not you need Driver CPC. There are certain driver CPC exemptions for both existing and new HGV drivers. However, for new entrants, the general rule of thumb is that if you are going to drive professionally after you pass your HGV tests, you will need to complete all 4 modules of the Initial Driver CPC.

If you do not already posses C1 entitlement and are a new candidate that needs The Initial Driver CPC, you will have to complete five tests, three of which are theory and the remaining two, practical.

HGV and Driver CPC licence acquisition can seem a daunting process, but it doesn’t have to be. Get in touch with Nottinghamshire Driving School and we will answer any questions that you may have.

Lastly, we would advise you to avoid any companies that offer a “fast track” HGV training courses. Everybody has to go through the same strict training regime before they can gain their HGV licence.

There is currently a shortage of around 50,000 HGV/LGV drivers in the UK.

Companies are happy to employ newly passed drivers. Give yourself the best chance of landing a job by doing your research and having a professional CV drawn up.

In line with the implementation of Driver CPC in September 2009, the minimum age for driving an HGV (category C and C+E) vehicle was reduced from 21 years to 18 years. The aim of the reduction was to entice younger drivers into the commercial HGV transport industry.

The HGV industry has experienced difficulties recruiting young drivers for many years. Younger people perceived the industry to have a lack of career development and poor job appeal. To put this into context, Only 1% of all lorry drivers are under the age of 25, and the average age of a HGV driver is 51.

Once you become a qualified HGV driver you will attend classroom based training that consists of 7 hour modules for Driver CPC. You will be required to have completed 35 hours every 5 years.

The average salary of a permanent, full-time UK LGV driver is currently around £27,000. A newly qualified HGV driver (cat C and CE) can expect to earn a salary in the region of £20,000 to £25,000 in permanent employment, whilst an experienced driver can earn in the region of £23,000 to £35,000+.

Temporary or Agency LGV Driver Employment

A large number of new HGV drivers opt to work with agencies, driving for a variety of different organisations in order to gain experience and improve their driving skills. The disadvantage of agency work is that the pay rates can vary. Drivers may not be achieving hourly pay in line with their qualifications and experience. Temporary work also cannot be guaranteed.

Pay expectations for the various entitlements are listed below:

• Cat C1 (over 3.5 tonne but no more than 7.5 tonne vehicle). 
£6.50 to £11.00 per hour.

• Cat C (over 7.5 but no more than 32 tonnes – under construction and use regulations – vehicle).
£7.00 to £13.50 per hour.

• Cat CE (class 1, articulated, drawbar type vehicle).
£8.00 to £15.00 plus, per hour.

FAQs for B+E trailer towing

1. What are grandfather rights in towing a trailer?

If you passed your car driving test on or after 1 January 1997 you can:

• Drive a car or van up to 3,500kg maximum authorised mass (MAM), towing a trailer of up to 750kg MAM.

• Tow a trailer over 750kg MAM as long as the combined MAM of the trailer and towing vehicle is no more than 3,500kg.

MAM is the limit on how much the vehicle can weigh when it’s loaded.

It is easy to know if you have grandfather rights as your licence tells you what categories you are entitled to drive.

2. What trailers can I train to tow on?

NDS uses Horseboxes and Commercial trailers for our towing, which have to be loaded to the correct specifications.

3. How long does the training take for B+E?

The training can take as little as 4 hours for very experienced drivers with trailers and up to 2 days for inexperienced drivers. It will come down to personal ability, which will be assessed during your training.

4. How much does B+E Tests cost?

• You can find the cost of our B+E Test course here

No training Company can add anything to this fee as it is set nationally by the government. The fee can either be paid for by you or by Nottinghamshire Driving School when you book your course with us.

Park House, Mile End Road, Colwick, Nottingham, NG4 2DW
0115 987 5507