Traffic calming measures planned for Peterborough drifting hotspot after car park damaged by tyre marks.

Traffic calming measures are being planned along a drifting hotspot in Peterborough as the latest incident caused damage to a business car park.

Tyre marks left at Stapledon Road, Orton Southgate.
Tyre marks left at Stapledon Road, Orton Southgate.

Residents in Orton Southgate have been frustrated for months about a lack of progress in tackling anti-social car cruising in the area, particularly along Stapledon Road; which has often prevented them from getting to sleep at weekends.

Police have frequently insisted the need to prioritise other incidents when quizzed about the lack of a clamp down on this kind of behaviour, however, the last meeting on Saturday (August 21) did end with two men from Kettering being arrested on suspicion of drug driving.

The event took place in Stapledon Road and saw cars drifting late into the night. This left a significant amount of discarded rubber on the roadside, piles of old tyres lying around, damage to some walls and significant tyre marks in a nearby car park on the Orton Southgate Industrial Estate. It was not only the damage that has upset residents and business owners but the smell also.

Tyre marks left at Stapledon Road, Orton Southgate.

Cllr Julie Howell, Green Party Group Leader and representative for Orton Waterville, has worked and campaigned hard on the issue for many years and has asked those taking part to consider if their actions are fair, given the significant cost it would incur the council to tackle the issue.

She tweeted: “Someone approached us and told us to ‘get off our high horse’ because they are going to keep on drifting. Measures to prevent it are going to cost the taxpayer £50k+, so perhaps it’s the people causing the problems who want to think about whether what they’re doing is fair.”

Cllr Howell is part of a cross party working group on the council that is looking into the issue and that group has confirmed that traffic calming measures are being designed in the worst hit areas, including Stapledon Road.

A spokesperson for Peterborough City Council said: “Car cruising is an issue in Peterborough, both for residents and businesses, and as such a cross party working group, supported by council officers, is identifying what more we can do to deter this anti-social behaviour.

“The group is also in talks with other regions of the country which have experienced similar problems to identify what practices have worked elsewhere and whether there are any other powers we are able to use as a local authority.

“The council is limited to an extent in what we can do to prevent car cruising, but where possible we are already taking action, including in Stapledon Road in Orton Southgate where we are now designing traffic calming measures in consultation with businesses.

“Additionally, we work closely with the police and alert them to any car cruising events on public land when this is spotted by our CCTV team.

“We urge anyone affected by anti-social driving to keep reporting incidents to the police on 101, online, or by calling 999 in an emergency. This will give the police the opportunity to respond to incidents and also provide both the police and council with much-needed evidence when implementing orders and enforcement operations.”

When asked about the damaged car park, Cambridgeshire Police said that the issue alone would not be pursued as criminal damage but encouraged any one that feels they are a victim of a crime to come forward.

A spokesperson for Cambridgeshire Police added: “If anyone feels they are the victim of a crime they should report it to police who will assess and investigate as appropriate.

“It is not possible to comment precisely on individual circumstances but generally, where there are no other factors, the leaving of marks on the public highway by vehicle tyres would not normally be prosecuted as criminal damage.”