About Diamond Drive and Myself

My Qualifications 

Russ Baker

DSA.ADI. Grade A. (higher Grade -January 2020).Partner of Diamond Drive.


I have been  a qualified Driving Instructor for over 28 years since October 1995. I am  a Grade A, Fully Qualified Instructor. During my  9 Year Service as a Special Constable for Hampshire Police which was completed in 2007, I  managed to pass the Basic Police Vehicle Test and the Multi-Role Vehicle Test. I also spent hours learning new skills with the Class1 Traffic Police drivers from the Roads Policing Unit. My Pass Rate which is well above the National average currently running at around 75% for the year. Most of my pupils pass their test at the first attempt.

 I teach in a  2020  Hyundai i20 Play Special Edition. It is a 1 litre Eco Boost with air-conditioning, rear reversing camera, front and rear dash cams, on-board Satellite Navigation System, hands free technology and  numerous other safety features including He-Man dual controls.


 I can do Lessons in the following areas. Totton, Ashurst, Calmore, Netley Marsh, Totton, Eling, Bartley, Testwood, Woodlands, Cadnam, Copythorne, Ower,  Marchwood, Lordshill, Maybush, Rownhams, Nursling, Redbridge, Shirley, Southampton, Freemantle, and Millbrook.


 I can also do lessons in the following areas but due to the distance from suitable training areas, lessons must be of at least 90 minutes duration.

Lyndhurst, Dibden  Purlieu, Hythe, West Wellow.


You also need to be aware that I only use the Test Centre at Maybush .


 Russ works from 9am - 4.30pm on Monday

 9am to 4.30pm on Tuesday

 9am to 5.00pm on Wednesday.

 9am-5.00pm on Thursday.

 9am - 2.30pm on Friday.

 He can also do the occasional Saturday morning.


I have become very well known in the local area for the competitive prices, my quality of instruction and also my reliability. Many of my clients have recommended their friends and relatives to also learn with me. Over the years I have gained an excellent reputation and tremendous respect from all the Examiners at the Maybush Driving Test Centre which is the only test centre that I now use.

 I am a very experienced Driving Instructor with a calm and easy going nature. I am also Pass Plus registered.

You can be guaranteed expert tuition for the basic driving test and I also offer advanced driving lessons and Pass Plus lessons, which could entitle you to a discount off your motor insurance. You will receive structured lessons covering the complete syllabus and also be given plenty of theory test preparation, including hazard perception that has now been introduced into the theory test. I also offer training in Independent Driving which is also now part of the practical driving test. I also offer free access to Theory Test Pro, an on-line learning resource.

I will undertake Mock Driving Tests which will fully prepare you for the big day.

Once again, I am a fully Qualified Instructor (plenty of Instructors teaching at the moment are Trainees), and I have signed the DSA'sVoluntary Code of Practice and have been CRB checked by the Police .



When I am not teaching I enjoy spending time with my daughter Amelia, swimming and going to the Gym. I am also a keen Saints supporter. My responsibilities include updating the Diamond Drive Website, the Mobile Website and the promotional side of the company.

I enjoy being a Driving Instructor because     "Passing the driving test changes peoples lives completely and being able to help in the process is a privilege.”

The above is a link to the FreeIndex Website which is an ideal place to leave and read reviews about Diamond Drive. Please feel free to Leave me any Feedback

Press the success button above to view some of the recent clients who have been taught by Russ
Press the above button to read many of the customer reviews that have been made about Russ over the years

If your Instructor is not fully  Qualified then their Certificate will still need to be displayed in the same place but it will be a Pink Triangle which means that they are still a trainee(See Above). Many  Instructors will not readily admit to being a Trainee as the Driving Schools normally still charge the same lesson price as if you were being trained by someone who is fully qualified. Many People think this is unfair.
Another problem that I frequently come across is, if your instructor is a trainee, their licences normally only lasts for 6 months. If they fail the final qualifying exam they will then have to give up teaching immediately. This could leave you having to find yourself another Instructor sometimes just days before booked tests.
If there is not any kind of Licence displayed by your Instructor, be very careful as they may not be qualified at all and they could be breaking the law.

Diamond Drive History

Diamond Drive began over 23 years ago and at its peak employed 15 Instructors.

The partners of the company are Russ Baker and Lisa Dockree who are brother and sister. Lisa qualified to be a Driving Instructor in 1992 and worked for a local driving school.
While she was working she also had the task of training Russ to qualify as an Instructor - Russ qualified in October 1995 and they then decided to set up a company between them and they settled upon the name of "Diamond Drive". Lisa has now relocated to the Devon area where she runs Diamond Drive Devon with Russ now running the re-named Diamond Drive Totton.

Diamond Drive (As seen on TV)

The two photographs below were taken in 2005 when Diamond Drive was approached by the BBC and were asked to feature in a television programme called Driving School. Filming took place over a number of weeks and various lessons and the driving test itself was filmed by a number of cameras.

Claim to Fame

Over the years Diamond Drive has taught thousands of people to drive including local celebrities.

 Pictured above is the BBC South Today reporter and News Reader, Laura Trant, who passed her test with Russ

Justin Rose (Shown Above) the World Famous Golfer was taught to drive by Lisa 

 Jimmy Cooper, a very talented and well known Professional local Boxer from West Wellow and Totton. Jimmy was taught by Russ

Ex Southampton Football Club Player Kevin Gibbens was taught by Russ

 Jonathon Dibben, from Totton,the very talented local Cyclist who competed for Great Britain at the Euros, is now part
of theSky Team men’s endurance squad.

Pictured above is the Local Band 'Forever Can Wait'. Russ taught Liam to drive. He is 2nd from the left.