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And this is what Michael Rodd wrote!

Dear Beverley

Delighted that things have gone so well for you and Speed Bumps.
Can’t believe it was as long ago as 1972 but remember the day well – Dunsfold aerodrome – Bob Symes directing and his daughter Roberta playing the girl friend.  And clearly budgets were not as tight as they are now – that fleet of different vehicles Bob had lined up to drive over your bumps! What indulgence.

And I have had a haircut!

Michael Rodd

Dunsfold aerodrome
Dunsfold Park, Cranleigh,
Surrey, GU6 8TB

Find it on the map

John Phillip William Dankworth, musician, bandleader and composer of the theme tune for the BBC's Tomorrow's World, born 20th September 1927; died 6th February 2010.

Everybody has to start somewhere. Back in 1972 I had an idea about rubber speed bumps instead of concrete and asphalt so I wrote to the BBC’s Tomorrow’s World top rated science program. Amazingly, they were interested and they wrote back asking for samples of these proposed speed bumps but under no circumstances was I to go down to London and their offices, so I went the next day . . .

Of course the producers at Television Centre were brilliant; scary but definitely brilliant! Something on the lines of  “I thought I told you not to come down to London!”

Sure they knew that their interest could change my life and it did. Was it a world first? Not sure, but after the program was on the telly that summer and Raymond Baxter calling me “a research team from the West Midlands” the world did sort of beat a path to my door.

I can still remember the days filming, video machines had not been invented yet, and the stories the BBC crew told me down the pub at lunchtime.

Making rubber speed bumps seemed such a simple idea. I have worked very hard for the last 37 years trying to recreate that spark of original thought. If you get the chance take a look at my work on this web site you will see some of my other ideas but speed bumps was where it all started.

Sometimes when I am in the back of a black cab I feel tempted to share a bit of my life with the cabbie “it was me that invented speed ramps”, and then I think of their possible reaction and usually keep very quiet.

Beverley Ward

Beverley Ward signature