Here is a Q & A with Team Leader and Parish Council Chairman Peter Latham talking about Speedwatch:

Does it cost anything to join?

We welcome anyone to join especially those passionate about safety within the village and it totally free.

What is provided?

High visibility jackets are provided

What type of equipment is used?

The equipment we use is an approved police issue radar gun. Unfortunately Essex Police will not permit any other speed detection devices. We find that using both a written record and a dictaphone produces a very accurate report for submission.

Is the equipment difficult to use?

Luckily the radar is a point and shoot so to speak and in addition to the speed the vehicle direction is displayed. This prevents a vehicle coming towards the team is not misread as a vehicle leaving.

What training is involved?

Training is provided by the community speedwatch team within Essex Police. As yet we are waiting for dates.

Is it effective?

Effectiveness covers many aspects. The speeding driver is made aware by letter and although we have repeat offenders data shows 95% do not offend again. That said the visibility of the team does encourage speeds to be reduced and that is the ultimate aim.

Do volunteers go out on their own?

Volunteers make up a team with a minimum of three which makes data capture easier and to a degree safety in numbers.

Do you have problems with drivers?

On a very rare occasion we will have a driver stop to mention they have received a letter but no aggression has every been directed at the team. We have a letter from Essex Police to hand to any driver that enquires.
Due to the location in the village where we stand we are able to register a vehicle speed and even in they slow down the original speed is recorded.
The same applies if they pass the team at 30mph and future acceleration is recorded.

How do the police support the scheme?

The police use the information to build up intelligence not just of the speed but reoccurrence and a list of VRN transiting the village.
The Speedwatch team can request support by police presence if the data determines that some offenders need a penalty notice.

Will I get feedback of people who are caught speeding?

All reports are circulated to members of the team but once actioned no records can be retained.

Do Speedwatch go out on certain days?

Due to the low membership numbers the team coordinate and will arrange when the next activity can take place. Certain times are evidently more productive, school run, lunch times and afternoon rush hour when the village become a rat run. We don’t have set days otherwise drivers would know when we’re likely to be out and about.

Can I come and watch what you do?

We welcome anyone to watch and hopefully find the activity is not just there to catch offenders but to interact within the team and show professionalism to all drivers.

What are the roles of the Speedwatch team?

There are no set positions within the team and once trained the activity and roles swap on a regular basis. The one function that will generally stay constant is the VRN checks by the Team Leader to confirm details of the vehicles prior to submission to Essex Police.

What happens if someone is found driving above 45mph in a 30mph zone?

All speeding vehicles receive a standard letter. Due to back office constraints only the more serious offences receive follow up of after three letters have been sent to a single offender.

If you would like to join the Speedwatch Team please get in contact with Cllr Peter Latham by emailing cllr.peter.latham@highwoodpc.org

The Speedwatch Volunteers have been out recording the speeding through the village and have recorded the information below:

DateTimeNumber of VehiclesTop Speed Recorded (mph)Interesting Notes
14/06/20211600-170016 in total

11 – 37 mph
3 – 38 mph
1 – 42 mph
1 – 48 mph
25/06/20211600-170017 in total

4 – 36 mph
7 – 37 mph
2 – 38 mph
1 – 39 mph
3 – 42 mph
28/06/20210800-090020 in total

3 – 37 mph
6 – 38 mph
5 – 39 mph
3 – 40 mph
08/07/20210810-091010 in total

1 – 51 mph
1 – 43 mph
1 – 41mph
1 – 39 mph
6 – 36 mph
08/07/20211330-14309 in total

6 – 36 mph
2 – 37 mph
1 – 38 mph
12/07/20211730-183010 in total

4 x 36 mph
1 x 38 mph
1 x 39 mph
1 x 40 mph
1 x 43 mph
2 x 47 mph
13/07/20210800-090012 in total

6 x 36 mph
1 x 38 mph
1 x 39 mph
1 x 40 mph
2 x 42 mph
1 x 47 mph
19/07/20211700-180015 in total

7 x 36 mph
5 x 37 mph
1 x 40 mph
1 x 41 mph
1 x 45 mph
45One vehicle accelerated and has been caught previously.
23/07/20211655-180020 in total

2 x 42 mph
2 x 39 mph
5 x 38 mph
2 x 37 mph
8 x 36 mph
27/07/20210800-09007 in total

1 x 43 mph
2 x 38 mph
4 x 36 mph
14/09/20211645-181017 in total

7 x 36mph
4 x 37mph
2 x 38mph
2 x 39mph
2 x 41 mph
41Three vehicles recorded had no tax.
15/08/20221730-184010 in total42
18/08/20220800-090011 in total41