A COMMUNITY speed watch scheme in Bournemouth is being hailed a success two months after it started.

Back in January, members of Poole Hill Neighbourhood Watch joined forces to set up the group, who use hand-held devices to measure traffic speed on roads in and around the town centre.

Drivers breaking the speed limit have their registration number taken down and passed on to Dorset Police, who then send a warning letter to the address of the vehicle’s registered keeper.

Norman Decent, the group’s co-ordinator, said: “I hadn’t thought I would ever do something like this before but we are very pleased with how it has gone so far.

“We have a team of nine, with three cameras between us, and we have been out a few times since January – all local people doing their bit for their community and encouraging people to be safer drivers.

“We have had great training from the local safer neighbourhood team, and when we are out they check up on us to make sure we aren’t having any problems.”

The group has targeted roads where problems have been reported, with mixed results.

One group on East Overcliff Drive recorded 19 speeding motorists out of 46 cars which passed in the time they were there. On another occasion, in West Hill Road, West Cliff, only two out of 106 cars were recorded breaking the limit.

The group are planning to target Suffolk Road in the near future after complaints from local residents at Tuesday’s Poole Hill Neighbourhood Watch meeting.

“It is quite a wide road and we understand that cars tend to speed along there between the car park and Cambridge Road,” Mr Decent added.

The volunteers are also noting the details of drivers using mobile phones or not wearing seat belts. The police then send out warning letters. If a vehicle is observed breaking the speed limit three times police may take further action.