GREEN councillors have called for urgent action against speeding on two main roads in South Oxfordshire.

The councillors have accused Thames Valley Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner of a 'dereliction of duty' after repeated calls for speed limit enforcement on the A4074 – between Oxford and Wallingford – and the A4130 – from Didcot to Wallingford and Henley – have been met with 'delays and excuses, despite clear evidence of sustained law-breaking'.

In an open letter to Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Barber and outgoing Chief Constable John Campbell, councillors Robin Bennett, Sam Casey-Rerhaye, Andrea Powell and Jo Robb have expressed their frustration and disappointment.

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Local residents and parish councils report that the two stretches of road have become a 'racetrack' for bikers, who come from all over the country to drive from Berinsfield to Henley.

Last December, local parish councils along the roads held a meeting with Mr Barber and MP John Howell, who represents Henley, to demand action on speed.

However, more than nine months on residents say nothing has been done and motorbikes and motorists continue to speed along both roads with impunity.

"Parish councils are deeply frustrated at the lack of action despite assurances last year," said Ms Powell, district councillor for Benson and Crowmarsh.

"It is appalling that Thames Valley Police is failing to deal with the significant highway safety issue of speed on our local roads.

"These speeds are so high and the data so alarming that it simply cannot be ignored."

Matthew Barber, Thames Valley Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “I understand the concerns of residents - I am not able to direct the police in their operations but I will ensure that officers from the roads policing team are able to meet with the local council and residents so that we can address the issues together.

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“There are trials that are being looked at around the country involving both average speed cameras and noise cameras.

“I understand the frustration in waiting to evaluate the effectiveness of these tools elsewhere but if I am to commit public money to such schemes I want to be convinced that they will be effective.

“The force focus their enforcement where there is the greatest risk and issue a significant number of speeding penalties each year.

“I do not accept the suggestion that Thames Valley Police are ‘abrogating its responsibility’ but I do agree that these is more that can be done by the Force to reassure residents, both through enforcement and the use of technology.”

A Thames Valley Police spokesperson added: “We appreciate there have been concerns around speeding - we are continuing to target for enforcement across the South and Vale local policing area.

“Over recent months, pre-planned operations have been in force along with mobile speed cameras.

“I understand these are short-term measures, which are not always possible with current policing demands.

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“The South and Vale Neighbourhood Policing Team is working with partners agencies with a view of looking at long-term solutions to prevent these offences from being committed.

“We would continue to encourage members of the public to report any incidents of speeding or anti-social driving to us so we can continue to build up an intelligence picture and target areas where there is the greatest risk.”


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This story was written by Gee Harland. She joined the team in 2022 as a senior multimedia reporter.

Gee covers Wallingford, Wantage and Didcot.

Get in touch with her by emailing:

Follow her on Twitter @Geeharland

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