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History of lorry and bus driver testing

From 1935, when driving tests were first introduced, to the outbreak of World War Two in 1939, every driver of a goods vehicle over three tons unladen weight had to have a vocational licence.

To hold one of these, you had to pass a special driving test. Yet from the end of the war until the late 1960s, anyone over the age of 21 who held an ordinary driving licence was allowed to drive a heavy goods vehicle (HGV).

The 1960s saw an increase in road haulage and vehicle sizes, and an accompanying decrease in standards of safety and vehicle maintenance.

This prompted the reintroduction of HGV testing, with much more stringent standards than the original pre-war test. 

In September 2008 Driver (Certificate of Professional Competence) CPC was introduced for bus and coach drivers. 

Driver CPC for lorry drivers was introduced in September 2009.