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Community Speedwatch Scheme in Wiltshire to reduce speeding and empower residents

Change Management

Wiltshire community speedwatch was developed in October 2009. It is a three year programme designed to provide a county-wide co-ordinated response to the issue of speeding traffic. Speeding is a subject of growing public concern - it is regularly raised at area board meetings right across the county. The high level of demand was picked up at the council’s area board meetings. As a result, the area boards team developed a bid for funding to support the development of a more comprehensive county-wide community speedwatch scheme.

The community speedwatch scheme was linked to two strategic objectives – building “resilient communities” (the volunteering element) and “safer communities” (tackling dangerous driving). The initiative was awarded £90,000 by the local council and in October 2009 the council, police and local volunteers started to set up a comprehensive community speedwatch scheme. 

Community speedwatch uses Wiltshire’s unique community issues system - an online system that allows local people and community groups to raise local issues directly with their area board. When a speeding issue is submitted, the community area manager checks if the site is already the subject of police enforcement or has previously been surveyed using a “metrocount” - "metrocount" is an electronic system used for traffic data collection and analysis. If not, the community area manager sends “metrocount” request forms and criteria to the parish council to return to the road safety unit for action. When the “metrocount” survey has been carried out the road safety unit produce a report which states whether the level of speeding justifies further action. The community area manager then sends the report to the parish council.

When an area is identified as suitable and safe for community speedwatch the parish council is asked to recruit community volunteers. The community speedwatch co-ordinator trains the volunteers to carry out roadside checks on the speed of vehicles. The volunteers are also supported by neighbourhood police teams.   Community volunteers record the speed and registration numbers of offending vehicles and the owners of speeding vehicles are sent letters by the police which draw attention to the offence and warn the driver of the consequences of excessive speeding.

About this case study
Main Contact

Steve Milton

Head of Community Governance

Wiltshire Council

Tel: 01722 434255




Steve Milton wrote this case study for Governance International on 7 November 2011.
It was updated in 2016.

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