Cabbies take ice cream 'Knowledge Test'

Scott McBain with his branded taxi
Scott McBain with his branded taxi

Taxi drivers are famed for passing the notoriously difficult ‘Knowledge’ test but a north east firm has provided an unconventional twist on the age-old exam.

Mackie’s of Scotland has tested Aberdeen cabbies with its very own version of the assessment undertaken by London taxi drivers with a set of rigorous questions about its much-loved ice cream and the family business.

20 drivers from the city’s Rainbow City Taxis travelled to Mackie’s Aberdeenshire farm to sit the gruelling test and enjoyed a guided tour of the factory to learn how the product is made.

One Rainbow cab is being completely wrapped with branding for Mackie’s 19.2 - to promote the firm’s new ice cream parlour in Marischal Square.

Scott McBain, whose taxi is undergoing the colourful Mackie’s wrap, said: “A couple of weeks back, I was approached by our office to see how I felt about the idea of having the Mackie’s design on my cab.

“Then we met with the team from Mackie’s at the new 19.2 parlour and I loved the look of the design. For the next three years I’ll be driving around with it on the taxi.

“Those of us that were lucky enough to get invited up to do the ice cream ‘knowledge’ test thoroughly enjoyed it – although I’d be lying if I said I didn’t do some research beforehand.

“It was a really interesting trip as I’m a fan of the Mackie’s ice cream anyway, I just hope it shows when I get my exam results back.”

The taxi drivers had to answer a host of questions related to Mackie’s ice cream and its history.

Scott’s research paid off as he scored 100% while the other drivers all met their pass rates of 75%.

All those who pass will be treated to a special discount card to allow them to sample the sweet treats on offer at the new 19.2 parlour at cheaper prices.

Karin Mackie, Marketing Director at Mackie’s, said: “The new design on the taxi is really eye catching and I’m sure Scott’s customers will be bombarding him with questions when they get into his cab from now on.

“Luckily, he should be able to answer them all if all has gone to plan with his ice cream ‘knowledge’ test.

“We’re delighted were able to give some of the drivers a tour of our farm and hopefully the things they learn will come in handy if anyone asks them about our new 19.2 parlour.”

The company’s new parlour opened in December last year and has already established itself as one of the prime spots for locals to relax with a sweet treat.

Its name comes as it is located exactly 19.2 miles from the Mackie’s Westertown family farm where its ice cream and chocolate is produced.

The Knowledge was introduced in 1865 and typically takes students three to four years to learn and anyone who wishes to drive an iconic London black cab must pass it.

Aberdeen taxi drivers do their own version of the London ‘Knowlegde’ test called the ‘Street Knowledge Test’ which lasts for around an hour.