FOUR of Oxford's busiest roads accounted for almost 19,000 speeding tickets last year, new figures show.

Dozens of motorists were caught by cameras on the Botley, Marston, Banbury and Woodstock Roads every day in 2018, even though the 30mph routes are regularly congested during rush hour.

One resident described the figures as 'terrifying', while councillors have warned motorists of the extra risks of speeding in built-up areas. 

Cameras on Botley Road were by far the busiest last year, with the two devices clocking 8,760 illegal drivers combined - despite the road being one of the slowest routes in and out of the city.

Read also: The number of people caught speeding on the A34 in Oxfordshire last year

Susanna Pressel, city and county councillor for Jericho and Osney, said she understood the temptation to speed when the road was clear, but warned it could have fatal consequences.

Oxford Mail:

Woodstock Road camera

She said: "I know personally three pedestrians who have been knocked down by cars on Botley Road in recent years, all on pedestrian crossings. 

"Two of them were children. There have been many other accidents. 

"There have also been at least three fatalities in the last 20 years or so, all cyclists, so we certainly want to see traffic speeds controlled."

Statistics provided by Thames Valley Police as part of a Freedom of Information request showed one of the two cameras, believed to be the device passed by drivers heading into Oxford, was triggered 6,333 times last year. 

The other zapped 2,427 motorists - meaning an average of 24 speeders were caught on the road every day.

The overall total was a considerable increase on the 7,998 drivers caught in the 13 months from June 1, 2017 to June 28, 2018.

Read also: More than 20 motorists a day caught speeding on Botley Road

More than 1,000 residents signed a petition asking for a new 20mph speed limit after a child was knocked down two years ago, with Ms Pressel 'hopeful' new £9.1m plans for the road would see this become reality.

Oxford Mail:

Botley Road speed camera

When unveiling the plans last month, the county council said Botley Road was recognised ‘as being a very slow route in and out of the city centre, facing daily congestion problems and poor journey experiences for all road users’.

Ms Pressel's fears were echoed by residents living near the Banbury and Woodstock Roads, where cameras caught 3,076 and 3,681 speeding drivers respectively in 2018.

Meanwhile, 2,319 motorists were clocked by a camera 'near Hernes Crescent', which shares a junction with Banbury Road.

Read also: £9.1m plans unveiled for Botley Road

Joe Shuter manages the North Oxford Association community centre on Diamond Place, off Banbury Road, and called the figures 'terrifyingly high', adding: "You'd have a job speeding at rush hour, but when you get to 9pm in the evening it's almost deserted.

"The figures are not even a slight surprise. You've got colleges and boarding schools there and lots of youngsters in the area in the evenings.

"It's reasonably well served with pedestrian crossings but you see people run the lights."

Andrew Gant, Summertown councillor and the city council's Liberal Democrat leader, added:

"It's good to see our hardworking police continuing to prioritise this issue despite all the other pressures they face. 

"Our newspapers carry too many depressing reminders of the dangers on busy radial routes shared by all sorts of users. Even marginal speeding can result in a surprisingly large increase in stopping distances."

Read also: Find out where police caught more than 4,000 speeding drivers last year

He called for safer cycle lanes on both Banbury and Woodstock Roads, with upgrades planned in the county council's Local Transport Plan 4.

Both routes saw speeding increase on the 13 months from June 2017 to June 2018, while there was also a jump on Marston Road, which runs between South Park and New Marston.

Oxford Mail:

Banbury Road speed camera

The 3,469 speeding tickets in the 12 months of 2018 were up on the 3,319 handed out in the previous 13-month period, which city councillor for the area, Mary Clarkson, called 'disappointing'.

She said: "Marston Road is a residential road with a primary school, pub, shops, a Scout Hut, community centre and three churches along it. 

"Speeding cars make it feel threatening for people who need to cross the road to make the most of Marston’s community buildings."

Ms Clarkson said she wanted more enforcement in the area, including vehicle-activated signs and speed guns for community members.

Mick Haines, of the same ward, added: "Drivers seem to get past a speed camera and let rip. Cameras are alright to an extent but sometimes it encourages them to pick up speed after getting past."

Thames Valley Police spokesperson, Louisa Maher, said the increase in drivers caught was 'mainly due to the introduction of digital cameras'. Non-digital cameras were still used until December 18 last year, before they were phased out.