Speed cameras could face uncertain future

THE future of speed cameras across has been placed in doubt after an award-winning road safety team was told it is likely to be disbanded.

Northamptonshire Road Safety Partnership was yesterday delivered the news it is likely to be scrapped after Northamptonshire County Council announced it was to cut £1 million a year of funding.

The move comes after the road team, which runs educational courses, funds speed cameras and pays to improve road signs, has overseen the biggest fall in the number of road deaths in Northamptonshire since records began.

In the last year, the partnership has organised the 2Fast2Soon, BikeKraft and CarKraft workshops, helping to educate almost 2,500 youngsters. More than 13,000 people have also attended speed awareness workshops.

Last year brought the lowest recorded number of fatalities and the lowest number of serious injuries on the county’s roads since records began 50 years ago.

The partnership has been funded by the police and the county council, which previously received a Government grant to help pay for it. The cost of speed cameras may now have to be met by the police, if at all.

Councillor Heather Smith (Con, Prebendal), cabinet member for roads, yesterday said: “It is costing quite a lot and the funding has been removed by the Government, so we’re not getting any money to run the partnership.

“No decision has been taken yet on the future of speed cameras, but I would speculate the mobile cameras are likely to go. But that would be a police decision.”

Teresa Bywaters, whose teenage daughter Sophie died crossing the A45 last year, said it was wrong to take money out of improving road safety. She said: “We have to put all the provisions in place to make sure there aren’t any unnecessary accidents.

“As grown-ups we have to have some form of foresight and put in place as much as is feasible. Money shouldn’t come into it because you can’t put a price on life and I think there has to be other avenues where they can take funds from.”