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Learning to Drive in Kirkwall

The national average driving lessons required to pass the practical driving test is 47 hours with a driving instructor and an additional 22 hours of private practice with a family or friend are recommended.

Kirkwall’s Driving Test pass rate compared to other cities across the UK is a lot higher than the national average sitting at 64.4%.

The test centres in Kirkwall are Orkney with a pass rate of 68.8%, Thurso with 59.5%, Wick with 66.7%, and Golsopie with 62.5%

The nearest additional driving test centres for Kirkwall are in Buckie with a pass rate of 42.0%, Banff with 64.1%, and Elgin with a much lower pass rate of 40.9%.

Kirkwall’s Practical Driving Test Centres

  • Banff, (Kirkwall), Driving Test Centre Banff, Ground Floor Banff Castel, Banff, AB45 1DL
  • Buckie, (Kirkwall), The Fire Station, East Carthcart Street, Buckie AB56 1QJ
  • Elgin, (Kirkwall), Crown Buildings, 21 Trinity Road, Elgin IV30 1UE
  • Golspie, (Kirkwall), Golspie Fire Station, Back Road, Golspie KW10 6SP
  • Lairg, (Kirkwall), Lairg Fire Station, Main Street, Lairg IV27 4DB
  • Orkney, (Kirkwall), The Kirkwall Auction Mart, Hatston Industrial Estate, Kirkwall, Orkney KW15 1FL
  • Thurso, (Kirkwall), Naver House, Naver Road, Naver Business Park, Thurso KW14 7QA
  • Wick, (Kirkwall), Driving Test Centre Wick, Airport Industrial Estate, Wick KW1 4QS

Kirkwall’s Theory Test Centres

  • Kirkwall, (Kirkwall), The Pickaquoy Centre (Sports, Arts, Leisure, Conference Facility), Muddisdale Road, Kirkwall KW15 1LR
  • Wick, (Kirkwall), The Smith Room, First Floor, Pulteney Centre, Huddart Street, Wick KW1 5BA
  • Tongue, (Kirkwall), The Kyle Centre, St Andrews Glebe Industrial Estate, Tongue IV27 4XB

Quick Links

Kirkwall – did you know?

  1. Kirkwall just the capital of Orkney today, but for centuries it was also the capital of the Norse-held Nordreyjar – the ‘Northern Isles’.
  2. James III of Scotland claimed the Orkney islands in 1472 after his bride’s father, Christian I of Denmark-Norway, failed to pay the dowry he had promised for his daughter.
  3. Despite sounding decidedly Saxon, the name Kirkwall comes from the Norse name Kirkjuvágr (Church Bay), which later morphed into Kirkvoe, Kirkwaa and Kirkwall.
  4. Kirkwall was first mentioned in the Orkneyinga saga back in 1046. The saga recorded that Rögnvald Brusason, the Earl of Orkney was killed by his uncle Thorfinn the Mighty..
  5. In 1486, King James III of Scotland declared Kirkwall as a royal burgh, today it is a bustling, busy town with a historic centre full of character. A Viking spirit still runs through the town evident in the magnificent St Magnus Cathedral.
  6. William Balfour Baikie, the Explorer, naturalist and surgeon was born in Kirkwall in 1825. He died in Sierra Leone, leaving behind eight children.
  7. In the 17th Century, Kirkwall people could choose to be buried under the Cathedral floor as long as they paid a fee for the privilege. Many medieval stones, decorated with symbols of death, along the Cathedral’s interior walls denote these burials.
  8. Kirkwall harbour with a little more than half a mile of quay edge is the second largest commercial hub for Orkney only Hatston is larger.
  9. Clara Anne Williams (née Rendall) the missionary, teacher, and wife of Rev. Aeneas Francon Williams was born in Kirkwall. She was awarded the Kaisar-i-Hindmedal in 1946 for her work during WWII through the Red Cross.