Who we are, and what we do

Cambridge Advanced Motorists is the Cambridge Area local group affiliated to the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists). The IAM is one of the two main organisations in the UK who offer an ‘advanced’ driving test, and the infrastructure to support you in passing that test. RoSPA is the other such organisation.

Advanced Driving is simply day-to-day road driving done to a higher level of skill and confidence. I mention this because some assume it’s to do with high speed, skid pans, handbrake turns, and so on. Being keen drivers we do occasionally organise trips to skid pans, but this is not part of the normal process.

Guidance is given by volunteer Observers organised by local groups such as CAM. The essence of learning advanced driving is that you go out with an observer for several drives (typically adding up to around 12 hours) during which the observer will help you in the techniques necessary to pass the IAM test.

This process is what the IAM calls the Skill for Life package.  

How much does this cost?

At the time of writing, Skill for Life costs £149 which might sound a lot, but not when you compare it to conventional driving lessons.  There is ‘payback’ – both in terms of reduced car wear, and the IAM has it’s own insurance scheme which can result in significant reductions (but not, sadly, for under 19's). 

However, the real ‘payback’ is in being a more comfortable, confident and safe driver.  What price is that worth?

If you are interested in Skill For Life you can get more details from the IAM website (www.iam.org), or phone 0845 126 8600

Observers?

Our Observers are periodically examined by Senior Observers, and the group organises Observer Training Days with the help of IAM examiners and other “Class 1” Police-qualified drivers.  All observers are volunteers and receive nothing of the Skill for Life fee – that fee covers admin, some insurance, the test itself and your IAM membership.

Meetings

We organise bi-monthly meetings in Cambridge that are a mixture of social, general interest and training.  You are most welcome to come along if you would like to know more about what we do.

Interview

The following interview with Nettie Smith and Bob Bates was recorded for the Sunday Breakfast Show on Cambridge 105: YouTube interview link (17 minutes)