Firm delivers test track of the future

Richard Sanderson at the Longton Test Centre
Richard Sanderson at the Longton Test Centre
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A vehicle testing centre has become one of the first to take on privatised work from the Government.

The Longton MOT Test Centre has pumped £150,000 into its facility at Much Hoole to create a new testing line for heavy goods vehicles and buses.

It will carry out the work through the ‘authorised testing centre’ on behalf of VOSA, the body which currently oversees testing of all vehicles, as part of a push to get private businesses to take on work.

Centre owner Richard Sanderson said he expected to take on more technicians at the site to cope with the increase in work on lorries weighing in excess of 7.5 tonnes and buses with 23 seats and above.

He said: “This is the future of how vehicle testing is going to be taking place across the country now and we have invested to make sure we are at the front of the queue.

“You cannot take one of these trucks or buses to your local garage, it requires a high-tech piece of equipment and some highly-skilled people to run it and that is what we have at Longton now.

“I am expecting this to bring a lot more work our way and I will be looking to take on at least two more technicians in the near future.”

VOSA is winding down its work to just three days a week at its testing centre at Freckleton Road, Kirkham, which will see private centres taking over the work with a view to shutting down its own facilities.

From April, it even dropped the price of carrying out the tests if the vehicle owner chooses to go with a private operator.

Mr Sanderson added: “This will be the first centre of its kind in the South Ribble area and we are expecting a lot of interest from haulage companies and bus operators.

“The industry wants the best service provided at the best facilities for the best price and we believe we can offer that.”

There are already testing facilities on the Red Scar Industrial Estate in Preston and at Clitheroe and Blackburn.