A group of residents in Blenheim were so concerned about speeding in their neighbourhood that they decided to do something about it!
Cliff Garwood, Blenheim Speedwatch Co-ordinator said: “We have long had a problem of cars coming off of the A127 and forgetting that they are no longer in a 40 miles per hour limit. We felt that it was only a matter of time until someone got hurt and I just couldn’t sit back.”
In conjunction with the Neighbourhood Police Officer and PCSO George Shepherd the group was born. George is trained as a Community Speedwatch Trainer, as well as being a dedicated Neighbourhood PCSO for Blenheim so he was well aware of the issues and able to train the local residents.
Local Councillor James Courtenay said: “When out speaking to residents I wasn’t surprised by the number of people who complained about speeding around Bridgewater & Treecot Drive and I wanted to do something about it. When I heard that the local residents and the police were working together in true partnership I couldn’t help but get involved.”
James has joined the Blenheim Speedwatch as a regular member: “We have had training by the local officers and have been out on our own. It is great to do something practical to benefit our community.”
Speedwatch isn’t about catching drivers says Cliff, “We don’t stop cars, give points out or anything like that, our aim is to slow vehicles down. When we record someone over the limit we take down their number plate and pass the information on to the police. The police then send a letter out asking the driver to slow down.”
Speedwatch has been launched in Bridgewater Drive, Treecot Drive, Mendip Crescent and Eastwood Road North, members set up signs and stand in hi-vis jackets in clear sight of motorists. There are over 100 Community Speedwatch schemes in Essex.