A POLICE force which has repeatedly dismissed claims it uses its speed camera vans to raise money has been told of rural residents’ frustration at seeing the deterrents on A-roads rather than in speeding hotspot villages.

North Yorkshire County Council’s Thirsk and Malton constituency committee chairman Councillor Caroline Goodrick, who represents the rural Hovingham and Sheriff Hutton division in Ryedale, said speeding was raised at every parish council meeting that she attended.

Cllr Goodrick raised residents concerns following a presentation about rural policing initiatives by Inspector Jon Grainge, of North Yorkshire Police.

She told the committee: “People get really upset and they get really upset because of the prevalence of camera vans on the A64 and at Flaxton and they won’t come out to the smaller villages where they know it is a problem.”

While the force has repeatedly stated its camera vans are sent to sites which have a history of accidents, former North Yorkshire Police officer and author GP Taylor is among numerous critics of the road safety initiative.

In 2015 he said the the siting of camera vans for road safety reasons was “an old cherry”. He said: “It is as if drivers are seen as a cash cow to be squeezed until the pips squeak. It is a well-known fact that dual carriageways and motorways have the fewest accidents and fatalities.”

Cllr Goodrick told Insp Grainge: “Your presence would give the community the reassurances that action was being taken.”

Insp Grainge replied the force was also told “all the time” by rural residents about speeding in villages and would pass on the committee’s concerns to the camera van controllers.

He said: “There is the speed protocol that exist in North Yorkshire, where people should report it and then what should happen is measurement device goes out and measures if there actually is a problem. Hopefully that would result, if the was found to be a problem, in some of the vans going out.

“I have the same kind of feel that people in the communities are getting, that I would like to see some of the speed vans in our built-up areas, 30mph zones, but I also see the serious and fatal accidents that happen in the A64 and we do have a responsibility to try and stop them and very often they are happening because of excess speed.”