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‘My wife couldn’t drive that big old thing’: 108mph pig farmer’s driving ban plea

PUBLISHED: 17:24 24 January 2020 | UPDATED: 15:34 25 January 2020

Pig farmer Christopher Cole was caught doing 108mph on the A47  Picture: Ian Burt

Pig farmer Christopher Cole was caught doing 108mph on the A47 Picture: Ian Burt

A pig farmer who drove at 108mph on the A47 told a court he should not be banned from driving because his wife could not drive with a trailer.

Christopher Cole, 62, of Orchard Farm, Holverston, keeps pigs on two farms around 12 miles apart in south Norfolk, one at his home address and one near Loddon, which he runs alongside his wife.

On July 4 last year, he was caught driving a Land Rover Discovery on the A47 at 108mph.

Appearing at Norwich Magistrates' Court on Friday having pleaded guilty to speeding, Cole pleaded with the bench to avoid banning him from getting behind the wheel, arguing his business would suffer as a result.

Asked by his solicitor Simon Nicholls about the impact of a ban he said: "I transport my pigs by tractor and trailer so I would have to get a haulier in to do it, which my business probably cannot afford.

"The trailer is far too big for my wife to do it, she would not be able to drive that big old thing."

The offence saw Cole given six penalty points on his licence, meaning a six-month driving ban as a result of nine points he already held.

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Meanwhile, two other drivers caught at speeds greater than 100mph avoided bans - Paul Gunning of Martyn Close in Palgrave and Fajar Fawad, of Chapelfield Gardens in Norwich.

Gunning, 46, was clocked driving a BMW at 114mph on the A11 at Spooner Row on June 20 last year and pleaded guilty to speeding ahead of his hearing.

However, Mr Nicholls, also representing Gunning, was able to convince magistrates that his 15-year-old daughter would suffer exceptional hardship should he be banned.

Mr Nicholls said: "His daughter suffers from a rare form of anxiety syndrome which means she cannot get the bus to school."

Gunning was given six points on his licence and was fined £733, but chairman of the bench Paul Hinson said he had proved exceptional hardship.

Meanwhile, trainee psychologist Fawad, 28, who drove a Peugeot 308 at 104mph on the A47 at Dereham, was fined £440 and also given six points on her licence.

Mr Hinson told her: "One will hope you have learned your lesson."

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