Jeremy Clarkson once smugly said there are no speed cameras on the A519 through the ‘Village of the Damned’ in Staffordshire … everybody thought he was spouting nonsense.
But was he?
After the local council spent hundreds of thousands of pounds on installing average speed cameras at strategic points through the once-bucolic leather working village of Woodseaves, nobody knows if they work or not.
And nobody is telling…
The cameras appeared in the village some time ago, years after Jezza described the road as being speed camera free!
Problem is, villagers say, people are still speeding through the rural retreat by the side of an old canal and very few tickets appear to have been issued at all.
Some people are actually adopting a Clarkson smug-face as they almost brag about being among the ‘elite’ who have received one.
But when the consumerwatchfoundation.com put in a freedom of information request regarding how often the cameras were actually in use, the request was actually turned down on the grounds the answer to our question could be detrimental to public safety.
But we asking for it for the safety of the people who actually live on the narrow country road.
And we were only asking how often the speed cameras in Woodseaves HAD been used in the past and not how often they WILL be used in the future … it is a salient point as these camera were installed amid a fanfare by the county council of ‘we are doing everything we can to help the people of Woodseaves’.
But it appears that they are turned on on the A519 very rarely indeed. Figures we have actually indicate that the cameras in Woodseaves were only actually operational for 43 days in a 16 month period.
Our request was not vexatious, particularly expensive or time-consuming to investigate and was not repetitions of a previous request.
But, here’s the rub … a chap who worked in the ‘roadside furniture’ industry says they aren’t speed cameras at all!
So, what are they then? Can anybody tell from this picture?
But villagers say that cars and large wagons still thunder through apparently oblivious to their existence adding to the thought that they might have a totally different purpose.
Calls have been put in to the local council and hopefully they will clear up the mystery soon.
However, we all know councils tend to pootle around quite slowly, so in the meantime can anybody identify these canary coloured ectomorphic stilts with double rotating heads and a Batman-like emblem holding them together?
Let us know your thoughts at the consumerwatchfoundation.com