Train driving licences and certificates
Any new driver must have a train driver licence and certificate to drive on the mainline railway. Existing drivers will need both by 29 October 2018. Doctors, psychometric assessors and training and examination centres who assess new train drivers must be recognised by ORR. Details of the requirements and how to apply for licences or recognition are below.
The Train Driving Licences and Certificates Regulations 2010 (TDLCR) as amended sets out the legal requirements of the licensing and certification system for train drivers in Great Britain. This brings into force the requirements of European Commission Directive 2007/59/EC on the certification of train drivers. Minor changes were made by the Train Driving Licences and Certificates (Amendment) Regulations 2015 which brings into force European Commission Directive 2014/82/EU. A revised guide to TDLCR was published in November 2015 which includes details of the changes. PDF, 2,816 Kb
The Directives form part of the European Commission's plan to improve the efficiency and competitiveness of Europe's railways. The key objectives of both the Directives and TDLCR are to:
- make it easier for cross-border rail services to operate;
- create a more flexible labour market for train drivers;
- introduce common standards of driver across Europe; and
- increase public confidence in the rail system through the requirement for certain groups of train drivers to hold a licence.
View our ‘position statement on depot drivers’ and the TDLCR.
Train drivers or their employers can apply for a train driver licence.
We strongly recommend that train operators employers submit applications for licences on behalf of their drivers via ORR’s online Train Driving Licence system as this will speed up the process of issuing the licence. We have published guidance on using this system.
Railway Safety Directorate
Office of Rail and Road
One Kemble Street
Recognition of assessors
Doctors or psychometric assessors who carry out the medical and psychological fitness assessments (under Regulation 8) of train drivers must apply to be recognised by ORR. Training and examination centres who train and examine the professional knowledge and competence (under Regulations 30 and 31) must also apply for recognition.
There are recognition routes for doctors , PDF, 27 Kbpsychometric assessors , PDF, 36 Kbtrainers and PDF, 27 Kbexamination centres . These give guidance on the evidence needed to support a recognition application. Applications should be emailed to RSD Admin or sent to the address above. You can find out who is recognised from our published PDF, 29 Kbregisters of doctors , XLS, 65 Kbpsychometric assessors and XLS, 69 Kbtraining and examination centres (as required under Regulation 23(1)). XLS, 49 Kb
As enforcing authority for the TDLCR we will use the principles established in our HSWA enforcement policy statement to ensure compliance with these statutory requirements.
Train driver certificate appeals
Drivers can appeal against a decision of a train operating company (under Regulation 36 of TDLCR) not to issue a train driver certificate or to update or renew it. The appeal can also be made if the certificate is suspended or withdrawn. The company's internal appeal procedure must have been used before ORR would consider any appeal it received. We have published guidance on the ORR appeal process which includes an application form. Applications should be emailed to DOC, 401 KbRSD Admin or sent to the address above under licence applications.
- Train driver licence application form DOC, 238 Kb
- Train driving licence application form guidance PDF, 88 Kb
- Supplementary guidance to HSE's Enforcement Management Model for ORR PDF, 965 Kb
- Routes to register ORR recognised doctors PDF, 27 Kb
- Routes to register ORR recognised psychological practitioners PDF, 36 Kb
- Routes to register ORR recognised trainers PDF, 27 Kb
- Routes to register ORR recognised examination centres PDF, 29 Kb
- ORR register of recognised persons - doctors who carry out medical fitness examinations of train drivers XLS, 65 Kb
- ORR register of recognised persons - psychological assessors who carry out occupational psychological fitness examinations of train drivers XLS, 69 Kb
- ORR register of recognised persons - training and examination centres who carry out general professional training and examination of train drivers XLS, 49 Kb
- Appeals relating to train driver certificates DOC, 401 Kb