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Operation clutch control: MI5 seeks driving instructors

Who taught him to drive?
Who taught him to drive?

Keep your spies on the road - MI5 is hiring two in-house driving instructors.

And for the successful applicants, it will be quite the lane change from teaching learners how to reverse round corners and parallel park.

A job advert posted by the domestic intelligence agency says: "MI5 is responsible for protecting the United Kingdom against threats to national security.

"We safeguard the UK against threats relating to terrorism, espionage and cyber-attacks.

"By joining MI5 as a driving instructor, you will be playing a significant part in keeping our country safe."

The instructors' primary role will be to conduct driving assessments for the agency's staff, including surveillance officers.

"All assessments follow a stringent reporting process, you will be required to assess a member of staff's driving ability and be asked for your professional guidance relating to staff meeting the relevant criteria," the job description says.

Other duties could include running training courses lasting up to five days for personnel who are already qualified drivers but who are required to "upgrade their skill level".

Once qualified within the role, there will be an opportunity to develop "driver capability" and "upskill in various areas", according to the advert.

It says MI5, also known as the Security Service, is seeking "confident and effective" communicators with "strong interpersonal skills".

The recruitment process for the full-time role, which pays between £33,783 and £36,103 plus benefits, is rigorous.

Applicants who make it through an initial sift will be invited to undergo a practical assessment of their driving ability and a "competency based" interview.

Once the successful candidates have been chosen, they will be invited to a security interview with a vetting officer.

They will also have to complete a medical examination and achieve the required level of physical fitness.

The advert emphasises that "discretion is vital".

It says: "Owing to the sensitivity in all areas of our work, we do not publicly disclose the identities of our staff. You should not discuss your application, other than with your partner or a close family member."

To be eligible, applicants will need to have held a Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA)-approved driving instructor qualification for a minimum of two years.

Candidates must be a born or naturalised British citizen, aged at least 18, and live, or be prepared to relocate, within a commutable distance of London.

At the end of June, there were nearly 40,000 approved driving instructors on a statutory register.