West Midlands Driving Test Centres: Your Essential Guide

West Midlands with PMF tick

The West Midlands is one of the UK’s largest counties, with a population of close to three million people. It’s little wonder, then, that there are plenty of driving test centres here to serve the county’s many budding drivers. In this Essential Guide, we’ll take a look at all thirteen of the West Midlands driving test centres, providing useful information on each of them, and helping you to find the right one for you.


Test Centres

Birmingham (Cocks Moors Woods)
Birmingham (Garretts Green)
Birmingham (Kings Heath)
Birmingham (Kingstanding)
Birmingham (Shirley)
Birmingham (South Yardley)
Birmingham (Sutton Coldfield)
Birmingham (The Pavilion)
Coventry
Featherstone
Lower Gornal
Wednesbury
Wolverhampton

Birmingham (Cocks Moors Woods)

Birmingham (Cocks Moors Woods) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (COCKS MOORS WOODS) FACT FILE
Address Cocks Moors Woods Leisure Centre
Alcester Road
South Kings Heath
Birmingham
West Midlands
B14 6ER

Parking? No information
Toilets? Yes: male, female and disabled
Disabled access? No information
2017/18 pass rate 38.5%

As one of the UK’s largest cities, it should come as no surprise to learn that Birmingham has a plethora of practical test centres (as well as two of the five West Midlands theory test centres!). We start with Cocks Moors Woods in the Kings Heath area of south Birmingham. If you took a look at the list of test centres above, you’ll have noticed that there’s also a Kings Heath test centre here. This isn’t a typo—these two centres are both found in close proximity to one another. In fact, this is deliberate, with the Cocks Moors Woods test centre opening to deal with extra demand in the local area.

With both of the aforementioned centres located just off the A435, this major A road is sure to feature on your practical test route. Don’t be surprised if your route also takes in some of the rural areas to the south of the city, too. After all, your driving test is meant to reflect as wide as possible a range of real-life driving, so your examiner will be sure to mix things up!


Birmingham (Garretts Green)

Birmingham (Garretts Green) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (GARRETTS GREEN) FACT FILE
Address Granby Avenue
Garretts Green
Birmingham
West Midlands
B33 0SD

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? No information
2017/18 pass rate 40.1%

The Garretts Green test centre is found on the eastern edge of Birmingham, a short walk from the Lea Hall railway station. As is the case with many West Midlands practical test centres, the Garretts Green centre is based in an industrial estate. Take a look on a map, and you’ll also notice another close neighbour of the test centre: Birmingham International Airport, which is just a few short miles away.

The proximity of the airport means you can expect busy conditions on the nearby A45 road—especially as this A road also links the cities of Birmingham and Coventry. Your test route will, however, also include nearby suburban areas. An example likely to appear on your test is Kitt’s Green Road, which features a number of roundabouts.


Birmingham (Kings Heath)

Birmingham (Kings Heath) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (KINGS HEATH) FACT FILE
Address 955 Alcester Road South
Birmingham
West Midlands
B14 5JA

Parking? No
Toilets? No
Disabled access? Arrangements will be made at this test centre if you have a disability
2017/18 pass rate 41.9%

We’ve already been in this neighbourhood in this guide, but now we come to the test centre that bears its name. Yes, it’s Kings Heath test centre, located a 4-minute drive south from Cocks Moors Woods. Learners here have managed to achieve a slightly higher pass rate, however, at 41.9%. In fact, this gives it the best pass rate of any test centre in Birmingham itself, and one of the best in the county—beaten only by Shirley (in Solihull) and Lower Gornal.

One of the most important road features you’ll need to be aware of here is the Maypole roundabout. This major five-way roundabout is just a minute away from the test centre, and will almost certainly make an appearance on your test. On the other side of the roundabout, the A435 road becomes a dual carriageway with the national speed limit in force—be sure you recognise the distinctive black-on-white sign!


Birmingham (Kingstanding)

Birmingham (Kingstanding) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (KINGSTANDING) FACT FILE
Address 205 Birdbrook Road
Kingstanding
Birmingham
West Midlands
B44 9UL

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? Arrangements will be made at this test centre if you have a disability
2017/18 pass rate 36.9%

We move from Kings Heath to Kingstanding in the north of Birmingham. Lying close to the M6, local learners are in a great position to practise motorway driving during their lessons, helping them feel more at ease when tackling them after passing. Don’t worry, though—you won’t have to drive here on your test itself!

What will appear on your test is a variety of busier urban roads, as well as residential streets. The latter will put your hazard perception to the test, as well as proving an ideal staging ground for your manoeuvres to take place. (Be sure to take a look at our guide to pulling up on the right for information on how to complete this particular manoeuvre successfully!)


Birmingham (Shirley)

Birmingham (Shirley) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (SHIRLEY) FACT FILE
Address 401 Stratford Road
Shirley
Solihull
West Midlands
B90 4AA

Parking? Public parking in DTC service road accessed via Union Road
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? Arrangements will be made at this test centre if you have a disability
2017/18 pass rate 44.9%

While still listed by the DVSA as a Birmingham test centre, Shirley test centre is actually just over the border in Solihull. Its pass rate of 44.9%, though, stands higher than any test centres in the city itself. It’s no wonder, then, that Birmingham has claimed it as its own—or that learners may be looking to head there.

So, what can candidates expect when taking their test at the Shirley test centre? Traffic, for starters—the test centre is right off the ever-busy Stratford Road (A34). This can make the numerous roundabouts along this stretch of road even trickier to navigate. You’ll also notice a few Red Route Clearway signs. This means that stopping is illegal here—not just for parking, but also for loading/unloading and boarding or alighting from a vehicle. Take our traffic signs quiz to make sure you know the meaning of a few more common signs!


Birmingham (South Yardley)

Birmingham (South Yardley) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (SOUTH YARDLEY) FACT FILE
Address Clay Lane
South Yardley
West Midlands
B26 1EA

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? You can get into the test centre in a wheelchair
2017/18 pass rate 34.1%

A few miles to the north of Shirley is the South Yardley test centre. Found in the east of Birmingham, those arriving by public transport should head to the Acocks Green railway station, which is around a 17-minute walk away. (Remember, though, that PassMeFast courses come with home and workplace pickups as standard, meaning that getting to your lessons and tests is a breeze!)

It’s easy to see why the DVSA sited a test centre here, with the test centre lying in close proximity to two major A roads (the A41 and A45), the residential areas of South Yardley and Wells Green, and the local centre of Sheldon. All of this provides a real variety of conditions that will provide even the most experienced of learners with a challenge. Don’t fret, though—check out our guide to avoiding test day nerves to stay cool as a cucumber on the road.


Birmingham (Sutton Coldfield)

Birmingham (Sutton Coldfield) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (SUTTON COLDFIELD) FACT FILE
Address 110-116 Boldmere Road
Sutton Coldfield
West Midlands
B73 5UB

Parking? Yes
Toilets? No
Disabled access? Arrangements will be made at this test centre if you have a disability
2017/18 pass rate 40.3%

With only a handful of theory test centres and practical test centres around, Sutton Coldfield is lucky to have both. While many driving test centres are located in industrial estates, away from the hustle and bustle of the city, that isn’t the case in the Sutton Coldfield practical test centre. Here, the test centre can be found amidst the row of shops on Boldmere Road, and just an 11-minute walk from the Wylde Green railway station. With parking spaces lining either side of this busy shopping street, there’s a chance you may have to perform a parallel park here.

Driving down Boldmere Road, there’s a good chance you’ll be heading towards Chester Road (A452). You’ll notice the familiar hatched lines of a box junction when turning here—so be sure you’re up to speed with all the box junction rules! There’s also no shortage of roundabouts and pedestrian crossings locally—so, while this area may be quieter than other parts of Birmingham, you’ll still have plenty to look out for.


Birmingham (The Pavilion)

Birmingham (The Pavilion) street view image

BIRMINGHAM (PAVILION) FACT FILE
Address The Pavilion
Moor Lane Sports Ground UCE
Moor Lane
Birmingham
West Midlands
B6 7AA

Parking? No information
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? No information
2017/18 pass rate 30.2%

Our final Birmingham test centre is The Pavilion. Found in the Witton area of the city, this is the closest test centre to central Birmingham. Given the difficulties of driving in an urban area, it should, therefore, come as little surprise to learn that this test centre has not only the lowest pass rate in the West Midlands, but has one of the worst test centre pass rates in the entire country.

Even so, roughly 3 in every 10 tests taken here still result in a pass—so, don’t give up hope! Be aware of some of the specifics of inner city driving, including staying at an appropriate speed to make progress on higher-speed A roads. This is particularly important to note, as nearby A roads such as the A34 may have speeds of 40 mph or higher.


Coventry

Coventry street view image

COVENTRY FACT FILE
Address Bayton Road Industrial Estate
42 Bayton Road
Coventry
West Midlands
CV7 9EJ

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? No information
2017/18 pass rate 40.5%

After comprehensively exploring Birmingham, it’s time to check out some other West Midlands areas. First, we’ll head down the A45 to the county’s second-largest city: Coventry. As is typically the case, you’ll be taking your test away from the city centre itself, with Coventry test centre located in the Exhall area, near to Bedworth. You’ll start out in the Bayton Road Industrial Estate before progressing onto roads in the vicinity.

With the test centre itself only a short drive from the A444 (Bedworth Bypass), it’s quite likely you’ll find yourself here during your test. This means you’ll need to be confident with dual carriageways—remember that this one carries the national speed limit of 70 mph. The multi-lane roundabout known as the Exhall Interchange is also one to watch out for—make sure you get plenty of practice here with your instructor before heading into your test.


Featherstone

Featherstone street view image

FEATHERSTONE FACT FILE
Address Driving Test Centre Featherstone LGV
Cat & Kitten Lane
Featherstone
West Midlands
WV10 7JD

Parking? No
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? Arrangements will be made at this test centre if you have a disability
2017/18 pass rate 40.2%

A few miles to the north of Wolverhampton is the Featherstone driving test centre, which lies just off the M54. Originally used solely for LGVs, this test centre now offers car driving tests as well, which begin at the industrial estate on Cat & Kitten Lane to the west of the village of Featherstone itself.

While the motorway close to Featherstone test centre won’t appear on your test, there are some major A roads quite close to the test centre itself which you will need to look out for, including the A449 and A460. The roundabout connecting the M54 to A449 near to Coven Heath is especially close to the test centre, so make sure you know how to navigate it with confidence.


Lower Gornal

Lower Gornal street view image

LOWER GORNAL FACT FILE
Address 19-21 Lake Street
Lower Gornal
Nr Dudley
West Midlands
DY3 2AU

Parking? No
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? You can get into the test centre in a wheelchair
2017/18 pass rate 48.9%

In such a heavily urban county as the West Midlands, it’s not too much of a shock to learn that most practical test centres here have slightly lower pass rates than the national average. After all, driving on city roads provides an array of challenges that are a world away from countryside driving. There is, however, one test centre in the county with a pass rate above the national average, and it’s this one: Lower Gornal.

While still a decidedly urban area, Lower Gornal isn’t quite as bustling as the cities of Birmingham, Coventry and Wolverhampton, which goes some way to explaining the improved pass rate here. There are certainly still some important obstacles you’ll need to face here, though—amongst them the tricky Five Ways roundabout which lies just a stone’s throw from the test centre.


Wednesbury

Wednesbury street view image

WEDNESBURY FACT FILE
Address Knowles Street
Wednesbury
West Midlands
WS10 9HN

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? You can get into the test centre in a wheelchair
2017/18 pass rate 37.0%

Lying in between the towns of Walsall, West Bromwich and Dudley, the Wednesbury driving test centre is the natural choice for learners across the Black Country looking to take their driving test. If arriving via the West Midlands Metro, your closest stop is Wednesbury Great Western Street, which is a 20-minute walk from the test centre.

If you’ve ever driven around Wednesbury, you’ll know that there are a number of roundabouts in the town centre that you’ll need to tackle. This continues on the Black Country New Road (A41) which runs to the west of the town centre, and which features on some test routes. Busy conditions may also occur at certain times close to the IKEA on Park Lane, which you may encounter on your practical test.


Wolverhampton

Wolverhampton street view image

WOLVERHAMPTON FACT FILE
Address Spring Road
Spring Road Industrial Estate
Ettingshall
Wolverhampton
West Midlands
WV4 6JX

Parking? Yes
Toilets? Yes: male and female
Disabled access? No information
2017/18 pass rate 37.6%

The last stop in our West Midlands rundown is the Wolverhampton test centre. This is one of two test centres serving the city, and is a good fit for learners in central and south Wolverhampton, while those in the north may wish to head to Featherstone instead. This test centre begins on the Spring Road Industrial Estate, located in the Ettingshall area to the south-west of Wolverhampton.

With a number of industries based locally, candidates taking their test here can expect busy conditions from the off. Residential areas such as Ettingshall and Parkfield may feature on your test too, particularly when your examiner asks you to complete the required manoeuvre. Higher speeds can be found on the Black Country Route (A463), which also features the major Spring Vale Island and Coseley Road Island roundabouts.


Want more information on the test centres we cover across the UK? Check out the rest of our Essential Guide series in the list below.

By Andy Boardman

Andy fell in love with driving while road tripping around Iceland. He'll provide you with plenty of useful motoring advice, helping you to get the most out of every trip. When he's not writing here, you're most likely to find Andy on his way to the next destination.