Roads Minister Baroness Vere (pictured fourth from left) praised DHL’s HGV driver training programme this week in a visit to the newly opened DHL Supply Chain Transport Development Centre (TDC).

The centre is a key component in DHL’s new Driving Ambition training programme which provides fully funded training for applicants to qualify as LGV drivers.

Driving Ambition offers candidates training worth up to £3,000 to obtain either a Category C licence to drive rigid trucks, or a C+E licence to drive artics. The programme is open to anyone looking to become an LGV driver, or those wanting to upskill from a Class 2 licence to a Class 1 and step into one of DHL’s 1,000 training vacancies.

New recruits are taken through an end-to-end course, covering everything from medical checks to driving theory and practical training. Experienced driver instructors work alongside the trainees, offering expert guidance and support to help them obtain their qualifications.

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Baroness Vere said: “I’d like to thank everyone at DHL for inviting me to visit their Transport Development Centre – a truly fantastic initiative. As we continue to work with and assist sector leaders to tackle the shortage of drivers, it’s great to see action such as this being taken to train new professional drivers in a supportive environment with experienced instructors – helping the next generation of recruits to kick start a rewarding career in the road haulage industry.”

As part of the programme, trainees use an LGV simulator to give them the experience driving an LGV in a safe environment and to help them become familiar with spatial awareness and vehicle handling.

All aspects of training and qualification take place at the Transport Development Centre to make the process simpler and more efficient. Candidates who qualify under the four-month programme can begin employment straight away.

Ian Clough, MD transport, DHL Supply Chain UK&I said: “I’m delighted to have welcomed Baroness Vere to our new facility. The national driver shortage needs a long-term solution and commitment, which is why we’ve invested heavily in this state-of-the-art facility.

“Our approach is to give candidates the highest quality training, while also removing the barriers that might have previously stood in their way such as cost and complexity. Our unique LGV simulator not only enhances training but gives us the opportunity to take to the road and give more people the chance to see and feel what it’s like to be a driver. I’m really excited that this could encourage more people to consider a career in our industry.”