Learning to drive in eastern Cambridgeshire? Enjoy both cathedrals and convenience? Then do we have a test centre guide for you! Ladies and gentlemen: Ely theory test centre. Based in the centre of the charming cathedral city, this part-time test centre is not one to cross off your list just yet.
Join us as we explore everything you need to know about taking your theory test at the Ely test centre. We’ll cover things like pass rates, wait times, local amenities and much, much more!
0333 200 1122 Please note: no direct phone number is available for this theory test centre.
3-4 weeks Waiting times as recorded at the time of writing. Exact waiting times may vary.
By public transport
If you’re heading to your theory test appointment by public transport, Ely offers up a couple of options. Let’s start with the train. From Ely train station, it should only take you about 13 minutes to walk to the test centre. Not bad, right?
For those who really want to cut down on the walking for whatever reason, a bus can drop you off slightly closer to your destination. Get off at the King’s School bus stop and it’s a 4-minute walk between you and the test centre.
To get a deeper understanding of the various transport links serving the city of Ely, head over to the Cambridgeshire County Council website.
Some learners manage to find someone who’s willing to drive them to their theory test. If you’re in this group, let the driver know that the postcode you’re aiming for is CB7 4DE. The test centre itself is located within a red brick building with a fairly striking white arch around the entrance. Remember, this venue only operates as a theory test centre on a part time basis, so you can’t bank on there being much in terms of signage to point you in the right direction. Just keep in mind that you’re looking for the community centre, which sits opposite a tree-lined park.
Speaking of park, if the person driving you plans to leave their car while you sit your test, they should be made aware that they won’t be able to park up at the actual test centre. The good news, though, is that there are a range of parking options nearby. The even better news? They’re free for 2 hours!
First try your luck at the Barton Road car park (CB7 4HZ), which sits just behind the test centre to the right. It should literally take you less than a minute to walk from here to your test. On the off chance that none of the 168 spaces are free, head instead to the St Marys Street car park (CB7 4ES). It’ll be an 11-minute walk to the test centre from here, but the parking is again free for 2 hours. Woohoo! Seriously, it is not common to find free parking around theory test centres, so add this to the list of pros for Ely!
As you can see, there isn’t a lot of data available for Ely because it’s a fairly new test centre. The pass rate over the last few years varies quite dramatically. These statistics should be approached with caution, however, because they are based on very small sample sizes. This is a part-time centre, so not a lot of tests are conducted here. Our advice is always the same no matter what the pass rates, though: focus on studying rather than the stats.
Make sure you don’t turn up to your theory test without the required preparation. You’d be surprised how many people don’t pass on their first attempt. If you want to earn a licence as soon as possible, you should focus on getting this first test passed and out of the way.
Not sure where to start? Well, the test focuses on the Highway Code, road signs and hazard perception. There is a huge range of revision resources out there that can help you revise all of these areas. We also recommend taking some mock tests once you think you’ve mastered the relevant information. Check out some theory test guides we recommend in the list below.
If you’re travelling into Ely just to sit the theory test, you might think about staying in a local hotel the night before. This cuts out a lot of travelling time and can reduce stress on the big day. Here are some nearby options:
We get it: you’ve only come here for the theory test, so you don’t feel like splashing the cash. And there’s no need to! Just a 20-minute walk (or 4-minute drive) from the test centre, you’ll find the local Travelodge. We all know the deal with these places—Buckingham Palace it ain’t, but easy on the wallet it is. This one offers king size beds, 30 minutes of free WiFi and a desk in your room.
If you’d rather skip the well-known chains and go for something with more of a local feel, head to the Riverside Inn. It’s handily located an 11-minute walk from the test centre. This cosy, family-run accommodation is very welcoming and each room is finished to a high standard. You’ll be staying in a little bit of Ely history, too, as the building dates back to 1888!
You don’t need to stray very far from the theory test centre to treat yourself to a more lavish night’s stay. The Poet’s House Hotel is an elegant, refined hotel situated just 5 minutes away. It sells itself as offering the “perfect blend of luxury and comfort” and, from the looks of it, that’s exactly what you’ll get! Rooms are beautifully decorated and each comes with a copper bathtub, waterfall shower and free WiFi. You’ll wake up refreshed and ready to ace the test!
If you’re not scooting off home as soon as the test is over, why not sample some of the local haunts? Check out some we recommend below.
The Prince Albert is a lovely pub with an even lovelier beer garden. If the sun is shining, we would definitely put this place at the top of your list. It’s ideally located just around the corner from the test centre. The Officers’-mess-turned-pub has earned a great reputation for both its beer and food, so you’ll be hard-pressed to leave unsatisfied!
You have your pick of a bar or restaurant with Eleven A, which is located around an 11-minute walk from the test centre. Heading into their Blue Bar, you’ll be greeted by stylish decor and staff equipped to rustle up whatever kind of beverage takes your fancy. Bar snacks are also available, but if you fancy something more substantial, pop through to the equally cool art deco-style restaurant.
Another nice spot that’s only an 11-minute walk from the test centre is The Cutter Inn. This riverside pub and restaurant gives you the chance to enjoy your drink with some lovely views over the River Great Ouse. The food is classic pub fare and if you stumble in on the right day you might be able to catch some live music!
And that’s your fill for Ely theory test centre. Its part-time status might put some learners off if they’re looking to secure an appointment ASAP, but you can’t argue with the free parking options! This is a solid choice for learner drivers based in east Cambridgeshire or even west Suffolk.
Remember, failing to pass the theory test is not a big deal. It simply suggests that you weren’t quite prepared enough, or maybe nerves got to you on the day. Rather than dwelling on what went wrong, focus on putting it right. Book yourself another appointment so that you have a date to work towards and hit the books!
Theory test completed and passed? Well done you! Now it’s time to prepare for the practical test. Wait times for these appointments can be much longer than those for the theory, so we recommend booking in nice and early. Your closest option is likely to be Cambridge practical test centre.
With PassMeFast, you don’t have to worry about organising every part of your driving journey on your own—our team can do most of the work for you! We’ll book your tests, link you up with a local, DVSA-approved instructor and keep track of your progress with regular check-ins. Take a look at our range of courses and work out which one matches your level of experience. (Not sure how many hours you need? Have a quick go on our course recommender tool.)
To book a PassMeFast course, or to simply find out more about how we can help you earn your licence, give us a call on 0333 123 4949. If time is of the essence and you already know what you want, hit the button below!