Covert surveillance of car parks across Britain has shown that women are better at parking than men. The study, one of the most comprehensive ever conducted on gender driving differences, found that women were more likely to leave their vehicles in the middle of a bay.

Women were also found to be better at finding spaces, more accurate in lining themselves up before starting each man oeuvre, and more likely to adopt instructors’ preferred method of reversing into bays.

Men were shown to be more skilled at driving forwards into spaces and more confident overall, with fewer opting to reposition their car once in a bay.

But once all the elements were taken into account, women were ranked first with a total score of 13.4 out of 20, compared to 12.3 points achieved by men.

Neil Beeson, a professional driving instructor who devised the experiment, described the results as “surprising”. Mr Beeson, who has recently appeared on the ITV show Last Chance Driving School, said: “In my experience men have always been the best learners and usually performed better in lessons.

“However, it’s possible that women have retained the information better. The results also appear to dispel the myth that men have better spatial awareness than women. “It shows that men need to give our partners more respect when it comes to parking. The facts don’t lie.”

The study was produced by the car park firm NCP, which employed a team of researchers to observe 2,500 drivers across its 700 car parks in Britain over a one-month period.             –ON