Despite some rumours that are circulating, I am not old enough to remember the Test when it started, and I certainly cannot remember each and every change that has taken place, but there have been many changes..
The Theory part of the Test used to be at the end of the Driving Test, and would be a couple of questions from your Examiner, normally about a couple of road signs.
That then changed to a separate Test, using multiple choice questions, to assess your understanding of signs and procedures.
The Hazard perception videos were introduced a few years ago, where you had to show how well you could identify a possible hazard as it developed infront of you. At the very beginning it seemed to always be the same man in a white jacket, holding a cardboard box, and a large Wilkie talkie, so that someone could tell him when to walk into the road from behind a van.
More and more real-life video clips were introduced, and the very recently it was changed to CGI videos, where the lighting conditions could be changed, or skid marks could be put onto a road as a clue, and so on.
The Driving Test has developed over the years as well... The types of roads used would change, the reversing skills would be changed, then one reverse was removed, to make way for about 10 minutes of independent driving, where you are asked to follow a series of directions, or to follow signs.
At present, some Test Centres are being used to trial a new format of test, where there is more time dedicated to Independent driving, following directions given by a satellite navigation system. They are also thinking of testing your ability to pull up on the right side of the road, as well as the left side, parking forwards into a bay, and then reversing safely (?) out of it again. Maybe some of these sections will be included in future tests, maybe not. If they are to be included, we will be given plenty of notice and time to acquire these skills, though they will be covered when you are learning to drive anyway.
The conditions and types of roads have changed massively over the years, as have the number, types, and technology within the cars on the road. At one time it was said that over a 10- year period, the number of vehicles on UK roads doubled. Add in better tyres, AntiLock Braking Systems, Electronic Stability Programs,Power steering, Air conditioning, the types and prices of fuel, and many other factors as well.
The road And traffic conditions are very very different today, compared to the past