Photo gallery: Engine enthusiasts take driving test on a steam roller in Mutford

It wouldn't be everyone's first choice of vehicle in which to undergo a driving test – but three steam engine enthusiasts have undergone an examination driving a steam roller.

John Hogg, of Burgh Castle, Stuart Supple, from Mutford, and Steven Green, of Beccles, donned L-plates on the eight-ton City of Worcester 1923 Aveling and Porter steamroller, for their Class G DVLA examination.

The trio, who are all members of the Norfolk and Suffolk Steam Engine Club, had to go full steam ahead perfecting their signalling gestures and manoeuvres, while keeping their cool as bemused Mutford residents, watched the steamroller make its way through the village.

Overseeing the test was precision engineer at AHB Services in Chedgrave, Alan Harper-Bourne, also a club member.

He said: 'The examiner had never done a steamroller test before. He made them drive down the road and do an emergency stop, which is mainly just slowing down to a stop.

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'They also had to reverse round a corner and then drive back up to the junction and turn right. They were also tested on their use of hand skills and driving the engine in an orderly fashion.

'The examiner was very good and it was all quite an event for him and the guys doing that test. It was good fun and done in a good nature and they all passed and were presented with certificates.'

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A Class G DVLA test covers any road rolling vehicle and will appear on a driving licence until 70 years of age, when the test would have to be retaken, as with a normal licence.

Steamrollers were still in use during the 1960s and part of the M1 motorway was constructed with their help.

Mr Harper-Bourne added: 'Steamrollers are our hobby and although you can drive the rollers with a normal licence, you have to put on the L-plates.

'It's not necessarily something you would have to have to drive, but it's something which makes you more complete in your hobby and it proves you're interested.'

The club, which was formed in 1959, owns the Marshall traction engine Woodton Lady and regularly attends rallies and social events.

• For more information about Norfolk and Suffolk Steam Engine Club contact Mr Harper-Bourne on 01508 528488 or 07776 381660 or email

• To view more photos of the test click on the photo gallery in the top right hand corner of the page

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