PEOPLE living in a Herefordshire village are adamant that they're helping to cut speeding after taking matters into their own hands.

Villagers in Colwall, between Ledbury and Malvern, set up a community speed watch team – part of a force-wide initiative from West Mercia Police.

The team said that over recent years, the average speed of traffic and several accidents had concerned locals.

So it was with the backing of Colwall Parish Council that they decided to do something about it.


"Our goal is not to catch speeding motorists," the group said.

"It is to be visible and therefore drivers check their speeds, making it safer for pedestrians and indeed the drivers themselves.

"The vast majority of reactions have been positive, both on the village Facebook page and by passing parents walking their children to school.

"So has it made a difference? Absolutely it has.

"It is very noticeable after only three outings, how gentile the driving has become. Very few speed past us.

"Some do, despite large yellow signs and bright yellow high-vis jackets. We dutifully clock the speed, take the vehicle details and pass the information on to the police.

"Our objective is to be known as a speed watch area, which hopefully positively changes driving habits. Let’s hope careful driving results in a safer village."

The West Mercia Police scheme, introduced in 2014, involves trained volunteers from the community monitoring the speeds of vehicles with approved, hand-held speed measurement devices.


Where vehicle speeds are found to be inappropriate, a letter is sent to the registered keeper by the police with the aim of encouraging them to reduce their speed when driving in the future.

Superintendent Gareth Morgan said: “Excessive or inappropriate speed continues to affect the quality of life for many communities across West Mercia.

"As part of our continued support towards the Local Policing Charter, we are enabling local communities to take an active role in addressing concerns about speeding traffic.

“The aim of the scheme is not to catch as many speeding drivers as possible but to encourage them to drive within the speed limit.

"Feedback from active group members suggests that motorists visibly slow down when they see the volunteers by the roadside carrying out speed monitoring.

"In many local areas where community speed watch is already in place, local residents have seen a positive change in driver behaviour and compliance with the speed limit and we look forward to replicating those results across more areas in the future.”