NORTH Shropshire MP Helen Morgan has lodged her support for proposals to return a driving test centre to Whitchurch by formally commenting on the planning application.

The Liberal Democrat MP has been campaigning to get a test centre back open in the town since the previous site was shut by the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) in April 2022.

The DVSA has now submitted plans to use Whitchurch Civic Centre as a base for driving tests and the MP says she has expressed her support for the proposals in a comment on Shropshire Council’s planning portal.

She said: “I fully support this application.

"Since the closure of the previous driving test centre, learner drivers from the Whitchurch area have been forced to wait months to take a test and travel long distances to access a test.

"Driving instructors have lost out on business and have waiting lists of students wanting to pass their tests.

“As the MP representing North Shropshire, I have spoken to dozens of individuals and families who have been negatively affected by the absence of a test centre in Whitchurch.

"The ability to drive is currently crucial for people of all ages in North Shropshire because of the paucity of public transport.

"Therefore, returning a test centre to the town will be a major benefit for the community and people living in the wider area.”

Whitchurch Town Council offered free use of the Civic Centre for driving tests shortly after the DVSA shut its previous site but it took months of vocal campaigning from the MP and the town council for the DVSA to finally submit plans to Shropshire Council.


The planning application, which requests a change of use for two rooms in the Civic Centre, will need to be approved before the test centre can move forward.

It was submitted last month and locals have until Monday, February 13 to comment on the proposal.

There is a huge backlog of driving tests across Shropshire, with drivers often having to wait months to be able to secure a test and then months for a repeat test if they fail.

A spokesman for Mrs Morgan added: "The closure of Whitchurch’s centre in Paul Moss left Oswestry as the only location where tests are available in North Shropshire, with learners forced to travel to Crewe, Wrexham or sites in Shrewsbury, Ludlow and Telford.

"Learners needing to pass as soon as possible have sometimes travelled hundreds of miles in order to access a test."