Posted by: secretperson | July 15, 2008

Swindon Stops Speed Cameras

This won’t be popular! The Tory council in Swindon is to cut the £400,000 funding it gives to speed camera schemes.

The cameras, often criticised as money earners, are obviously not earning the council money, as fines go to central government. Far be it from me to suggest they would have a different view point if they kept the cash! It seems central government gives a grant for road safety, and the council is encouraged to spend this on speed cameras. The local Labour MP is campaigning to keep the cameras.

Swindon will instead spend the money on other safety schemes.

This seems a good idea to me. The whole point of local authorities is they can use different local solutions. The Government probably won’t like it, but that is the system we have. I have long argued for more local devolved power. Those worried about a post-code lottery are right that there may be different services initially, but new and original schemes could be tried, and in the end the most succesful ones would end up being adopted by the majority of councils. With the support of course of the local electorate.

If the other road schemes cut accidents we may see them elsewhere. People may not like it and vote out the council, or at least worry them enough to change back to the cameras. The important thing is that something different is being tried, the only way to find out if it works is to wait and see. More councils should be brave enough to do their own thing, who knows what great new ideas might be unearthed.



  1. to get to work i drive on roads above the speed limit by about 10% , where there are cameras i slow down and then to make this up i then have to speed up to about 30% to make up lost time on roads where cameras are not present, remove cameras and i promise to only speed by 5% the whole way , that 1% illegal . whos cares about 1% of illegal-ness …….LOL

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