Dismay at theft of parish SpID

A Speed Indicator Device similar to the one stolen from Sawley

A Speed Indicator Device similar to the one stolen from Sawley

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A LOCAL Parish Council was horrified to learn that it’s Speed Indicator Device (SpID) – otherwise known as a Smiley Face – had been stolen from a location in Sawley.

Bolton-by-Bowland, Gisburn Forest and Sawley Parish Council has had the SpID for a number of years and, utilising the Parish Lengthsman, deploys it a various sites at Bolton-by-Bowland and Sawley which are governed by a 30 mph speed restriction. It also goes to Tosside when there are local festivities and the parish councillors believe it is much appreciated by parishioners as a positive gesture to reduce potential traffic hazards.

Parish council clerk Bruce Dowles commented: “I am gutted that something like this has been pinched. It cost £2,500 – but that is not the point, as it contributes to the wellbeing and safety of residents and visitors alike.

“Through County Councillor David Smith it was raised at the Cabinet Meeting at County Hall very recently, and I raised it at the Ribble Valley Borough Council Parish Councils’ Liaison Committee just last week.

“As a result it has been referred to the new Three Tier Forum which combines borough,county and parishes on relevant issues. The county council has just bought 20 of them, so potentially it as much an issue for them as it is us. Where we go from here is for the parish council to decide at its next meeting on July 2nd.”

Commenting on the theft, Mr Dowles added: “It was a calculated and deliberate act. It required not just a ladder but some pretty tough equipment to detach the SpID, with its backing plate, from the pole.

“If it was for scrap then all such SpIDs are now in danger of disappearing. If it was for any other reason then I am stuffed as to figure out what.It is indeed a very sorry time for local councils doing their bit for their communities!”