About

We’re really happy you’ve visited our site, especially since you are just like us – trying to make a life you love out of what you do.

gc-aboutWhether you’re just interested in what it takes to become a great driving instructor, someone who is currently training, or even an experienced ADI, we’re pleased to share our personal journey and new insights with you to help make you even more happy and successful than you are right now.

The driver training industry is a people business and we are people people. Read on to find out how we got here, where we’re going and where we can take YOU.
We’re Ged and Claire, and we LOVE what we do!

Meet Ged

ged-about

I grew up in rural Cheshire – a lovely part of the world and somewhere I thought I could never drag myself away from (until I visited beautiful Saddleworth!)  My dad Peter ran his own engineering firm, which had its fair share of ups and downs but was a business which he was always extremely proud of.  Irrespective of what life threw in his direction, he always maintained the belief that he could handle it – a strong positive attitude which I too have always maintained.

The key lessons my dad taught me were to be generous and to follow my life’s passion and enjoy the journey. Although he has now passed away, his and my mum’s support and pride in my educational and business achievements continue to inspire me every day.

After leaving college I was still unsure which career path to follow, but my interest in how humans learn, develop and interact led to me taking a degree in Psychology & Health Psychology at the University of Wales.  Like many students after graduation, I found it difficult to land my perfect job.  Yes – for some bizarre reason, everyone else ALSO had a degree in Psychology!  I had wanted to pursue a career in Educational Psychology at the time, but my lack of work experience prevented me from doing so.

For years and years, my mum and dad had badgered me to become a teacher, telling me how great I would be at it.  I quite liked the idea of teaching, but after a year’s voluntary work at my former primary school I began to realise that working with big classes of noisy kids wasn’t my thing!  As for secondary school teaching… well, there was absolutely NO way I would have had the patience to deal with a class of hormonal teenagers!

An advert in the local newspaper was the spark that ignited my career as a driving instructor.  It claimed I could work my own hours, be my own boss and earn around £30,000 per year!  “Wow!” I thought – and I would be teaching adults who actually wanted to be there.  I went along to a national training company for a chat, took out a Career Development Loan to pay for the course fees and signed on the dotted line.

Sadly, the training for the Part 3 test was woefully inadequate, resulting in me seeking outside help from an independent trainer.

Just 2 years later, I had gained some more advanced driving qualifications and taken a Train the Trainer course and also started training my first few PDIs!  I loved it.  Everything I had learned during my degree started to come to fruition, as now I had the opportunity to pass on my knowledge and experience of how people learn, how to communicate effectively and establish and adapt to different learning styles.  My new passion was training the trainers, and I knew that this was how I wanted to spend my time.

I have now been training ADIs on a full-time basis for over 11 years.  Claire and I joined forces in 2005 when we set up our business, Active Driving Solutions.  Our business has gone from strength to strength and we are privileged to work with some of the most dedicated professionals in the industry.  We are thrilled with the fact that people will travel from all corners of the UK to train with us, even flying in from Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man.

We pride ourselves on doing a great job and the buzz we get from being able to help people is off the scale!

Meet Claire

claire-aboutI have my Mum to thank for loving what I do.  She worked so hard holding down several part time jobs whilst my brother and I were young.  As we got older, she decided to train as a driving instructor and when I turned 17, I became her first learner when she started working on a trainee licence.  I’d love to say we got on great, that I took everything on board that she taught me and that we had a fabulous teacher-student relationship… but no!  I argued with her, questioned what she was telling me and was probably the pupil from hell!  I like to think that her experience teaching me was a huge learning curve and helped her become the fantastic instructor she was.

Anyway, she wasn’t that put off as at the age of 21 she asked if I wanted to become a driving instructor and she would train me.  After going for an interview in a large accountancy firm (my first choice of career, I know, accountancy?!) and seeing all the bored and unhappy faces sat at desks (no offence to accountants!), I decided to give it a go.  It wasn’t easy… a full time job, a part time job stacking shelves 3 to 4 times a week, living with a very unsupportive partner and studying until midnight could have been enough reason for me to quit, but those who know me, know how determined I can be. Some call me stubborn – but only close family, as they’re allowed to!  Once I start, I’ve just got to succeed.

In 1996 I became a fully qualified driving instructor.  At 22 I set up my own driving school and became my own boss… woo hoo!  I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.  Knowing how much I had struggled to pass the Part 3 inspired me to set out straight away on a journey of professional development, gaining knowledge, experience and qualifications to help me become better and better.

Fast forward a few years (I don’t want to bore you too much) and that takes me to where I am now, married to Ged, who, like me loves helping others achieve their potential, their goals, their dreams.  This is not just a job, it’s part of our life and the pleasure it brings us to help others reach their goals is fantastic.  I will always be aiming to learn more, just as you are seeking to do now and it will be a pleasure to help you in any way we can and to be part of your journey.