Merton’s youth rev up their engines

Merton’s young people will be getting their hands dirty with a new free motoring course made available by the youth opportunities fund panel.

The ‘ First Gear’ course will focus on a variety of skills from car maintenance, theory test practice and road safety and teenagers will get to work on real car engines within a designated workshop. The launch event at South Wimbledon Youth Centre took place on 11 May with a ribbon cutting to officially open the workshop.

Merton’s youth opportunities fund panel commissioned the borough wide project following a road safety conference indicating the high numbers of young people involved in road accidents. London Probation Service and the youth justice service have teamed up to ensure that youngsters who complete 30 hours of the ‘First Gear’ course receive a recognised accreditation.

The course is aimed at people involved in the community payback scheme but is open to all young people in Merton. The scheme provides young offenders with the chance to give something back to the community and improve their vocational skills.

Merton Council Director of children, schools and families, Yvette Stanley said : ‘Courses like this are a great asset to our borough as they teach young people important skills for life. Improved road safety knowledge and the knowledge of car maintenance will help new drivers become safe drivers.’

To find out more about First Gear, contact Jo Young on 020 8274 5878 or 07957 402 672.


Notes to editors:
· The workshop is located at South Wimbledon Youth Centre on Haydon’s Road
· Photos of the launch are available on request

Press Contact:
Leoni Munslow
Communications Assistant
London Borough of Merton
020 8545 4654