‘Speed camera’ birdbox defaced and stolen from garden within hours of being put up

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The controversy over Storrington’s speed limit took a bizarre turn last week, when a fake speed camera was stolen from a garden.

Amanda Munday told the County Times that she had a birdbox - designed to look like a speed camera - installed in her front garden to slow down traffic on the A283.

She said the stretch of road, which is in the village’s 30mph zone, has a serious problem with speeding drivers travelling at anything up to 60mph.

The birdbox was installed early on Saturday morning, but by midday someone had graffitied ‘fake’ on it.

That evening, the box was unscrewed from its mounting and stolen. The thieves appear to have turned up with a large sign saying ‘fake speed camera’ then, realising the bird box was only held on with six screws, abandoned the sign and resorted to taking the box.

“It was amazing what a difference it made; for half a day it was great,” said Amanda.

“I’ve been on to the police many times about getting something done about it, but they said that until there’s a death nothing can be done.”

Reflecting on the theft, she said: “Obviously they were a bit fed up by the fact that I put it up.

“I don’t really understand that because it wasn’t a real one - nobody was going to get a ticket.”

Having lost the birdbox - after having spent £400 on having it specially made - Amanda is now resigned to having to put up with speeding traffic.

“I really have to dice with death every day just trying to get across the road - they’re hurtling down and they’re mainly lorries that do the fastest speed.

“If one of those hits you, you’re jam.”

She has also had to spend a lot of money to have an earth bank removed, improving visibility to help her pull out of her driveway safely.

Amanda said she got the idea from reading about Bill Angus, a retired policeman in East Durham who built a similar-looking birdbox.

Mr Angus said there was a problem with speeding drivers, but insisted that the object was simply there to help birds. Any resemblance to a speed camera was purely coincidental.