Legally required safety services

Your maintenance obligations under a Section 19 Permit

There is more to running a minibus than buying a vehicle. Vehicles driven under a Section 19 Permit are required to have regular checks and inspections as well as regular servicing and MOTs.
Castle Minibus offer the required support services needed to protect your school, drivers, vehicles and passengers.


10-week safety inspections

Under a Section 19 Permit minibuses must have safety inspections completed by a qualified engineer every 10 weeks, regardless of mileage (6 weeks for vehicles over 12 years). These inspections are in addition to regular services and MOTs.
Castle Minibus works with two national companies of mobile engineers that will come and complete your inspections at your school, so you do not have to move your vehicles.

Learn more about 10-week safety inspections


Daily and weekly vehicle checks

Under a Section 19 Permit minibuses must be checked daily before they are driven, and these checks need to be documented and recorded along with any remedial works.
Castle have designed a free app with a dashboard, called STRIDA, for schools to complete and manage these checks.

Strida minibus checklist app

Set up your free dashboard and invite your drivers NOW, it’s free for all orgnanisations

Section 19 Permit

If you are a school that has charitable status or is not-for-profit you can run your minibuses under a Section 19 Permit, avoiding the need for a professional Operator’s Licence. Section 19 Permits are £11 from the DVSA and are displayed like a tax disk on the front windscreen – you need one per vehicle.

Drivers must meet these conditions under a Section 19 Permit if they don’t have a D1 entitlement.

  • Must be over 21
  • they have held a full category B car licence for at least 2 years
  • they receive no payment or other consideration for driving other than out-of-pocket expenses
  • the vehicle has a maximum gross weight not exceeding 3.5 tonnes (4.25 tonnes including specialised equipment for the carriage of disabled passengers)
  • for drivers aged 70 or over, that they don’t have any medical conditions which would disqualify them from eligibility for a D1 licence
  • no trailer is being towed
  • where the driver’s licence only authorises the driving of vehicles with automatic transmission, that only a vehicle with automatic transmission is used
  • Drivers aged 70 or over who don’t meet the higher medical standards are not authorised to drive small buses. They can drive small vehicles being used under a permit, provided they have renewed their car licence.


Driver Minibus FAQs


Online Driver Risk Assessments (CODA)

Our online driver risk assessments allow you to evidence that you are assessing your drivers annually. The online programme will not only give you feedback on your drivers’ abilities but also offers additional online training. This will also evidence your commitment to Driver Proficiency.

Read more about Driver Risk Assessments


Online Minibus Compliance Course (MCC)

This is an online course that aims to educate those responsible for managing the minibuses and drivers on their legal obligations where minibuses are concerned. It also details how to maintain the highest safety standards and WHY this is important for the drivers themselves as well as the school.

Online Minibus Compliance Course (MCC)