Greater Manchester and Lancashire Theory Test Centres: Your Essential Guide

Map of Greater Manchester and Lancashire

When you’re just starting out on your driving journey, one of the first things you should be thinking about is the theory test. Learning to drive isn’t all motors and manoeuvres, you know! There’s an exam you have to pass before you can even think about booking the practical test.

As PassMeFast covers such a large area of the UK, you have plenty of options when it comes to picking a theory test centre. In this essential guide, we provide a complete rundown of every theory test centre located in Greater Manchester and Lancashire. So, listen up, northerners! It’s time to decide which test location is the most convenient for you. To jump to your county of choice, just use the handy map below!

Lancashire Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester Theory Test Centres

Bolton
Manchester
Oldham
Salford
Stockport
Wigan

Bolton

Street view outside Bolton theory test centre

BOLTON FACT FILE
Address 34 Queensbrook
Bolton Technology Exchange
Bolton
Greater Manchester
BL1 4AY

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 4-6 weeks
Nearest railway station Bolton
2017/18 pass rate 46.3%

Let’s kick things off in bonny Bolton. This theory test centre sits just across the way from Queens Park and is super easy to get to by public transport. The nearest train station (Bolton, would you believe!) is only a 15-minute walk away from the test centre. There are also a few bus stops in close proximity, including the Garside Street stop and, of course, Queens Park.

You also have the option of arriving by car, which will likely involve hitting the M61 and continuing onto the A666. Sadly, as is often the case, the theory centre does not provide parking spaces. You do, however, have some very affordable options less than 10 minutes away. Have a gander on Parkopedia for further details.

Don’t let the fact that the pass rate at Bolton theory test centre sits just below average. How you perform on the day is really down to how much studying you put in! If you’d like a bit of help, check out our guide to passing the theory test.

Manchester

Street view outside Manchester theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address Blue Building
Ground Floor Units 3&4
Universal Square
Devonshire Street North
M12 6JH

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 3 weeks
Nearest railway station Ardwick
2017/18 pass rate 48.6%

Next, we move on to the top option for all of you city centre dwellers. Manchester theory test centre is located slightly away from the hustle and bustle, in the Ardwick area. It’ll take you around 20 minutes to walk there from Piccadilly station, or a speedy 3 minutes if you hop off the train at Ardwick. Those taking the bus should note that the nearest stop is Nicholls College. Thanks to these transport links, the test centre is also a viable option for those living outside of Manchester.

Catching a lift instead? Head down the Mancunian Way and turn onto the A665 when your sat nav says the word. As per usual, there is no parking at the actual test centre. Check out the Parkopedia page for this postcode to see what your options are.

The pass rates at this test centre are fairly high and only recently slipped below the national average. Of course, these statistics don’t mean much for individual learners. Each centre puts on the same test, so you just need to make sure you’ve read up on the highway code and know your stuff by the time test day rolls around!

Oldham

Street view outside Oldham theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address 5A-6A Whitney Court
Southlink Business Park
Oldham
Greater Manchester
OL4 1DE

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 4-6 weeks
Nearest railway station Oldham Mumps (Metrolink)
2017/18 pass rate 43.3%

Oldham theory test centre is a savvy choice if you live within this town or its surrounding suburbs. The test centre sits in a local business park, but while in some areas this can mean limited access by public transport, that’s not the case here. From Oldham Mumps tram station, it’ll only take you 10 minutes to walk to your test. Or, if you want an even quicker option, get the bus and disembark at the Hamilton Street stop—it’s just 2 minutes away!

If you’re driving to Oldham test centre just keep in mind that Southlink Business Park can be a little confusing on first approach, because it is quite large and contains multiple businesses. When you get to Whitney Park you need to be on the lookout for Pearson Professional Centres. Once there, don’t even think about nabbing one of the nearby parking spots—they’re reserved for employees! You can, however, find some affordable nearby options using Parkopedia.

Before booking your theory here, make sure you’ve done quite a bit of revision and know exactly what to expect. If successful on the day, you’ll be helping to give Oldham test centre’s pass rates a well-needed boost!

Salford

Street view outside Salford theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address Unit 1A Sovereign Point
31 The Quays
Salford Quays
Salford
M50 3AH

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 4-5 weeks
Nearest railway station Salford Crescent
2017/18 pass rate 50.0%

The Salford theory test centre is particularly useful for anyone who is adept at using public transport. Trains, trams, buses—they’re all options if you’re heading to Salford Quays! The best options to reduce time spent on your feet will be the Central Bay bus stop, or MediaCityUK tram stop. They’re 1 and 2 minutes away from the test centre, respectively.

Hitting the road with a designated driver instead? Take Trafford Road and follow signs to The Quays. You might not be able to park right outside, but you can leave the car just next door! Yes, the Lowry Outlet Mall has 1,800 spaces and charges a reasonable £2 for 2 hours of parking.

As you can see, the pass rate here is a pretty impressive (in the context of theory test centres, at least) 50%. This doesn’t mean taking the test here is easier than anywhere else, though! Be sure to take your theory seriously by studying all of the relevant material.

Stockport

Street view outside Stockport theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address Kingsgate
Wellington Road North
Stockport
Greater Manchester
SK4 1LW

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 6 weeks
Nearest railway station Stockport
2017/18 pass rate 48.7%

Stockport theory test centre is in a convenient location if you live in the area or are willing to take a bus to your test. The Kingsgate and Wellesley House bus stops are just a couple of minutes away on foot. You do still have the option of taking the train, but the nearest station is a 20-minute walk away.

As the test centre sits just off the M60, it’s also quite easy to get there by car—granted you can find someone nice enough to drive you or are willing to cough up for a taxi! There’s no parking at the centre itself, but if your chauffeur is planning to stick around, they can find nearby options on Parkopedia.

Stockport is a bit of a bellwether location, because its pass rate is exactly the same as the national average. If that kind of thing floats your boat, book in and get started on your theory test revision today by taking our handy quiz!

Wigan

Street view outside Wigan theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address 38-40 Market Street
Wigan
Greater Manchester
WN1 1HX

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 4-6 weeks
Nearest railway station Wigan Wallgate
2017/18 pass rate 48.8%

Rounding off the Greater Manchester theory test centres is Wigan. This location is perfect if you live in the north-west corner of the county. The centre itself sits smack bang in the middle of town and is really easy to get to if you’re taking public transport. There’s a bus terminal (Wigan bus station) right next door and the local train station is only 6-minutes away—talk about handy!

Those planning to drive to Wigan theory test centre need to know that the actual street it’s on can only be accessed by pedestrians. Plus, the address provided by the DVSA isn’t quite spot on. Entering WN1 1JF into a sat nav will actually get you closer! For information on parking options, hit up good old Parkopedia.

With pass rates just above the national average, Wigan theory test centre is an attractive option for anyone living in and around the Greater Manchester area.

Lancashire Theory Test Centres

Blackpool
Preston

Blackpool

Street view outside Blackpool theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address Unit 9A Darwin Court
Blackpool Technology Park
Blackpool
FY2 0JN

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 3-4 weeks
Nearest railway station Poulton-le-Fylde
2017/18 pass rate 49.9%

Heading over to Lancashire now, your first of two options is Blackpool theory test centre. We’d avoid trying to get to this location by train (unless you enjoy a long walk), but it’s very accessible by bus and car. In fact, from Hawking Place bus stop, it’ll only take you 2 minutes to walk to your test. Winner!

Getting to the test centre by car shouldn’t be a problem—just follow signs to Blackpool Technology Park and keep your eyes peeled for Pearson Professional Centres signs. Parking, on the other hand, is a little trickier. There’s no available space outside the centre and the nearest car park is a 45-minute walk away. It might be best to get dropped off and picked up by someone who doesn’t mind driving around Blackpool for an hour or so!

The pass rate at this theory test centre is currently above average, but that doesn’t mean you can have a laid-back approach to the test. Do plenty of revision and make sure you know how the process works. To inject a little but of fun into your studying, why not try out an educational game? We have a great one called Sorted!

Preston

Street view outside Preston theory test centre

FACT FILE
Address Norwest Court
Guildhall Street
Preston
Lancashire
PR1 3NU

Waiting times (as of February 2019) 2-3 weeks
Nearest railway station Preston
2017/18 pass rate 48.7%

Last but certainly not least, we turn to Preston theory test centre. It’s easy to get to whether you’re arriving by bus, train or car. For the absolute minimum amount of walking (no judgement here) you’re best off taking the bus to either the Waterstones or Boots stop. Both are only 3 minutes away from the test centre. Alternatively, you’ll find that it only takes 10 minutes to walk from Preston train station to the test centre.

Aside from the inevitable city traffic, you shouldn’t have too much trouble driving to the test centre. Just make sure whoever’s driving you is aware that they can’t park outside. Head over to the Parkopedia page for this location to see what your options are. From what we can tell, the nearest car park is only 2 minutes away, which is not too bad at all!

Looks like we have another bellwether test centre! Pass rates here have been declining in recent years, but that’s nothing for learner drivers to worry about. Study hard and you’ll be absolutely fine! If you think some extra help would be useful, check out our list of the ultimate theory test revision sources.


There are plenty more options where they came from! If you’re considering branching out a bit in terms of location, check out our complete guides to the theory test centres in other counties. Here are a few nearby areas, to get you started:

By Isobel Robb

Isobel enjoys the freedom of the open road and loves driving to new places. She's here to offer helpful hints and tips to improve your motoring skills. When not keeping up to date with the latest driving info you can find her discovering new restaurants or exhausting her Netflix subscription.