MOTORISTS caught speeding through a Worcestershire village are escaping prosecution because road signs have been put up in the wrong place.

The error was revealed after West Mercia Constabulary wrote to Worcestershire County Council asking officers to move the signs.

County councillor Richard Udall exposed the problem but refused to identify the village for fear motorists would flout the 30mph speed limit.

However, the Worcester News can reveal the problem signs are on the outskirts of Hallow on the A443 Worcester to Tenbury road. The road has no static speed cameras, but is often patrolled by police officers using mobile traps.

Coun Udall said he believed the problem was the speed limit signs have been put up more than 10 yards away from where they are said to be in the traffic order put down by the council.

He raised the matter at a recent council meeting and is calling on the authorities to investigate whether there are other locations across the county in the same situation.
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"I'm very worried about the whole situation as I'm concerned for the safety of the people who use the roads," said Coun Udall.

"We need to have proper police enforcement of those who speed and something needs to be done urgently to address this issue."

Coun Udall said he understood the council had known about the problem for some months but had not yet done anything to rectify it.

Councillor Derek Prodger, Worcestershire's cabinet member for the environment, said he could not confirm the problem existed.

He said the average speed of traffic in the village concerned was 31mph, but said motorists had been successfully prosecuted in the past for speeding.

He added: "I'd be concerned about any village where drivers are flouting the speed restrictions because they put at risk the villagers themselves and I don't want to see that continue."

A police spokeswoman said the installation of the signs was a council matter. She added: "We enforce the signs and it's up to them to install them in the correct place. We couldn't comment on whether they have or have not done that in this location."

The clerk of Hallow Parish Council, Peter Roe, said he was aware of the situation and that the county council was currently rectifying it, but declined to comment further.

Giles Henry, unit business manager at West Mercia Crown Prosecution Service, also said he was unaware of the situation but said it was a matter for the police and council.

He added: "If there was a realistic prospect of conviction with any speeding case we'd take it forward."