A SINGLE speed camera in Worcester has raised more than £1.5 million from speeding motorists.

Love them or hate them, the devices are raising a lot of cash in Worcester, particularly the one in New Road, although campaigners say they are saving lives.

Between 2004, when the New Road camera was set up and 2012, it has caught 22,942 drivers who have accepted the conditional offer of a fixed penalty of £60 – leading to a £1.38 million cash injection for the Government, which is where the cash goes.

During that time, 3,049 drivers have completed an £85 speed awareness course after being caught by the New Road camera, leading to further cash boost of £259,165.

The course, delivered on behalf of West Mercia Police by TTC Group, is only offered to drivers who have not been caught speeding in the previous three years and means they escape having penalty points added to their licence.

All fines and fixed penalties paid into the courts are transferred immediately and in their entirety to central government.

The New Road camera is one of 55 cameras, mobile and static, in Worcestershire.

All of the cameras are at sites where people have been killed or seriously injured or at places where there is a real community concern about the speeds that people are travelling and are not about money, say leaders from the Safer Roads Partnership in West Mercia.

Helen Roberts, business analyst for the partnership, said: “Between 1994 and 2004, 11 people have been killed or seriously injured on New Road.

“Since installation of the camera this has decreased to one collision of the same category and 15 people have been involved in collisions and sustained slight injuries.

“The severity has decreased, because the speeds of vehicles have decreased, showing that the camera is saving lives.”

Vicki Bristow, communications manager for the Safer Roads Partnership, said: “Cameras are there for one clear purpose, to reduce speeds and in turn reduce collisions and reduce the number of people killed or injured.

“The camera on New Road is doing its job and is continuing to help reduce the speeds and collisions on a very busy city link road and will continue to do so.”

Elsewhere, a camera in Bath Road, Worcester, caught 5,625 drivers who paid the fixed penalty, raising £337,500 since it was installed in 2004.

In total, 845 drivers caught in Bath Road chose to complete the speed awareness course, raising a further £71,825.

The device in City Walls Road, which was put in during 2003, caught 8,580 drivers up until 2012, raising £514,800 in fines and 207 completed the speed awareness courses, which raised £17,595.

In Tybridge Street, the camera led to 838 drivers paying fixed penalties, raising £50,280 and 1,420 completing speed awareness courses, raising £120,700.

And in Hylton Road, the camera resulted in 2,230 conditional offers, raising £133,800, since it was installed in 2004.

Of those drivers, 380 completed speed awareness courses, which has raised £32,300 in the same time.

What you’re saying Yesterday, Worcester News readers had their say on the New Road device on Facebook.

Stu Riff-Raff Evans wrote: “Greed cameras. Never seen a camera stop speeding yet. Speed humps on the other hand work a treat but then again they don't generate cash do they?

“While there is money to be made they don't really want to stop speeding. If it was a real safety issue we'd have hundreds of speed humps in city centres.”

Ashleigh Love Jimmy said she thought motorists were wise to the cameras – but did slow.

“Most people I see there slow down to 30 (for) the camera then speed up again,” she wrote.

Sandie Bishop said she didn’t believe the camera was in place as a safety feature.

She wrote: “How many pedestrians try crossing three lanes of busy traffic in New Road?

“So why do we need a camera there? Health and safety? I think not. Kerching.”

However, Jane Brooks said the cameras did increase safety on the stretch.

“New Road used to be a nightmare with drivers cutting others up and speeding which was the same with Tybridge Street,” she wrote.

“Love them or hate them we have to have something to deter inconsiderate drivers.”