Driving licence requirements for agricultural vehicles

04 April 2022

Farm business
An image of wheat being harvested

Are you driving your big kit legally? We look at the driving licence entitlements you need to drive different types of agricultural vehicles on the road, including telehandlers, sprayers and tracked vehicles.

Category F driving licence

In order to drive a tractor on the road, you need to have a category F driving licence.

There are two ways to get a category F licence:

  • Pass a car driving test. Category F is automatically acquired when you pass a car driving test. It is an entitlement that is linked to car category B. So with a category B licence, a driver gets the entitlement to drive a car and also gets the entitlement to drive a tractor.
  • Take a standalone tractor driving test. If you pass this test, you are issued with a category F licence. This allows you to drive agricultural tractors and trailers only. It will not cover any other type of vehicle.

Telehandlers and sprayers

A category B licence also allows the holder to drive other vehicles which are registered as agricultural machines on the road.

These include vehicles such as sprayers and telehandlers.

However, there are age restrictions on the maximum vehicle weights that can be driven by younger drivers:

  • Agricultural vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes – minimum age 17
  • Agricultural vehicles 3.5 tonnes to 7.5 tonnes – minimum age 18
  • Agricultural vehicles over 7.5 tonne – minimum age 21

Category H – tracked vehicles

Tracked vehicles steered by their tracks are in a separate H category. There is no automatic entitlement to drive vehicles in category H linked to the B category. In order to get the licence you need to drive tracked vehicles steered by their tracks, you must have passed an additional H category driving test.

This requirement is sometimes missed by drivers. If someone needs to drive a category H vehicle which is steered by its tracks, and they do not have a category H entitlement they should make arrangements to take the test as soon as possible.

More information

Further information is available on the Gov.uk website: Gov.uk | Learning to drive a tractor or specialist vehicle.

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