Safety campaign launched after 18 cats and one dog killed

Sue Barnard, of Ellesmere Road, Berkhamsted, with some of her homemade road signs. These two say: Your speed has killed 14 cats'
Sue Barnard, of Ellesmere Road, Berkhamsted, with some of her homemade road signs. These two say: Your speed has killed 14 cats'

An animal-lover is urging motorists to slow down with homemade road signs after nearly 20 pets were killed by cars on her street.

Sue Barnard, of Ellesmere Road, Berkhamsted, felt she had to do something after cradling one of her neighbour’s cat as it died on her doorstep.

Millie, a two-year-old tabby cat, was killed by a car on Ellesmere Road in Berkhamsted

Millie, a two-year-old tabby cat, was killed by a car on Ellesmere Road in Berkhamsted

Ms Barnard, who has lived on the 30mph street for 18 years, said: “It’s the lack of care and consideration that 
sickens me. They’re in their little metal bubble, but how long before a young child or an elderly person gets hit?”

The homemade signs, which have been attached to posts in the nearby railway bank along the narrow street of Victorian terraced houses, warn drivers that ‘30mph is a limit, not a target’.

Ms Barnard, who has driven HGVs for more than 30 years, said: “The correct speed is one appropriate to road, traffic and weather conditions.

“You don’t need to go at 30 down here – there are parked cars either side.

“Wing mirrors are always being ripped off.”

Since starting the campaign, Ms Barnard says she has been told that 18 cats and one dog have been killed on the street but she fears the number could be higher.

She also plans to deliver flyers to Ellesmere residents and several surrounding streets in a bid to make drivers stop and think.

As well as flyers, she is fronting a Herts Police Drive Safe campaign, which means she and other volunteers will be able to film and record the worst offenders before uploading them to a dedicated police website.

Resident Jo Winstone, who lost her two-year-old cat Millie to a speeding driver in August, said: “We all miss Millie desperately and have been in a complete state of shock since the day she died.

“We are moving to Tring soon and have been looking forward to the move, but we’re finding it hard to get excited as we now can’t take Millie with us.

“I still find it really hard to talk about her.

“She was the sweetest most affectionate cat that you could meet.

“She absolutely loved chin tickles and would let you do this for ages.

She was often shy but she had a huge personality and loved to play.”

The Winstones, who also have another cat called Dylan, say they hope Sue’s campaign saves other families from heartbreak.