Project which empowers Norfolk communities to tackle speeding turning tens years old

South Norfolk Engagement Officer Jim Squires.

South Norfolk Engagement Officer Jim Squires.

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A community initiative tasked with reducing the speeds of drivers throughout villages and towns in Norfolk is turning ten years old.

Community Speed Watches are already set up in a number of parishes throughout the Diss Express area, including Alburgh, Bressingham, Flordon, Hempnall, Saxingham Nethergate and Starston, and empowers communities to play a part alongside the police tackling the issue of speeding.

The project was first used in the village of Ash in Somerset, before it was trialled in Hopton in Norfolk in 2007.

A minimum of six volunteers are required to form a Community Speed Watch Group, who in turn are trained and issued a speed radar gun, signs and reflective jackets. Volunteers chose when they go out to monitor speeds and there is no minimum amount of volunteer hours required.

South Norfolk Engagement Officer Jim Squires says Community Speed Watches have the backing of the police and have gone “from strength to strength” since their introduction in the county a decade ago.

He added collected data helps to paint a picture for the police of where resources should be deployed to.

“Community Speed Watch is an opportunity to have an impact on the speed of vehicles throughout your village,” he told the Diss Express.

“Community Speed Watch in the last ten years has gone from strength to strength and it is working, from the figures that we receive — and all equipment and training is provided by Norfolk Constabulary.

“Most people complain to the police about speeding through their village and we do not have the resources to be in all of those villages, but Community Speed Watch gives you an opportunity to provide the evidence to the police there is an issue within your village.”

n If you would like to set up a Community Speed Watch where you live or join an existing group, contact PC Jim Squires (8am-4pm Monday to Friday) on 01953 423773 or 07766 990811.

He can also be emailed on squiresjr@norfolk.pnn.police.uk. Keep up to date on Twitter @SouthNorfPolice and on Facebook at South Norfolk Police