Anyone who wants to drive cars on public roads in the UK requires a driving licence. You even need a special kind of driving licence to enable you to have driving lessons with an instructor.
This licence is called a provisional licence and is issued to people who are entitled to a driving licence but who have not passed the necessary tests. You can apply for a provisional car driving licence any time from 3 months before your 17th birthday, but it will not be valid until your 17th birthday – so even if you have it beforehand, you won’t be able to use it.
Once you have a provisional licence, you can start taking driving lessons with a qualified instructor and can practice driving on the roads in a private car with a suitable passenger. This must be someone who is over 21 years old and has held a full driving licence for more than 3 years. Remember, the car you are driving must have insurance that provides cover for you to drive it.
Once you have passed your test, you will send your provisional licence back to the DVLA and be issued with a full driving licence, which entitles you to drive cars on the road without supervision or learner driver restrictions.
To apply for a provisional driving licence, head to your nearest Post Office and ask for Form D1 – a driving licence application form.