Woman passes L-test after 27 years

WOMAN has finally passed her driving test - after a staggering 27 YEARS.

WOMAN has finally passed her driving test - after a staggering 27 YEARS.

Teresa Clarke, 62, took her first driving lesson in 1981 as US president Ronald Reagan recovered from an assassination attempt and Prince Charles prepared to wed Lady Diana Spencer.

But after almost three decades, seven leap years and seven football World Cups, Mrs Clarke has finally shed her Learner -plates and proved she's one L of a trier.

Gutsy Teresa has:

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- Had 450 hours of tuition

- Taken 50 mock tests

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- Had 35 cancelled tests

- Failed 12 tests

- Got through 20 driving instructors

- Forked out £15,000 in fees.

Lesser people would have given up years ago - or used the thousands of pounds to hire a chauffeur or jump into taxis.

But the amazingly dedicated mum-of-two and committed Christian, who moved to the UK from Poland in 1972, does not know the meaning of defeat.

After 27 years of disappointments and bitter blows, the final thrust came when Mrs Clarke signed up with driving lesson company 5Day and instructor Patrick Beasley.

Within a few months, after one more failed test, she heard the golden words she had dreamed of for decades: “You've passed.”

Mr Beasley said he had to be “very firm” with his extraordinary student because of her “poor concentration”.

But he told how the magical announcement at 4pm on June 26 was followed by memorable scenes of celebration.

Patrick smiled: “She went absolutely bananas.

"I had to calm her down and the examiner was quite worried about her.”

Teresa, who lives with husband Richard and has two daughters Emma, 29, and Louise, 28, said: “I never wanted to give up. I asked God if I should carry on and the answer I had in my heart was sweet peace.

“I'm looking forward to taking people to church, to not having to ask my husband to take me shopping and to going to see my daughters.”

She added: “It took a long time for it to sink in when I was told I had passed. I kissed the woman examiner.”

Mrs Clarke, of Wroxham, Norfolk, has not yet got a car of her own - and is still waiting for her first solo drive on the county's roads.

But she is certain that she will be a good driver.

“My concentration is much better now. I don't drink coffee or tea any more and have no additives,” vowed Teresa.

Husband Richard said he was delighted and “relieved” at his wife's bombshell breakthrough after she'd almost broken the bank.

Mr Clarke said: “There's been so many times that Teresa has been close to passing."

Showing remarkable restraint and with creditable massive understatement, he added through gritted teeth: "There has been a certain tension involved in all this.”

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