A female vicar has been banned from the road – after she was repeatedly caught speeding as she drove “like a bat out of hell” to see her parishioners.
Rev Lynn Busfield, 51, was caught driving her Peugeot 206 at 42mph in a 30mph zone as she frantically tried to visit worshippers in the 16 parishes she covers.
She was slapped with an automatic six month ban after the four penalty points pushed her over the 12 points maximum. She was also fined £300.
Worcester Magistrates Court heard Busfield had a string of speeding convictions and was only spared a ban in September 2011 when a judge heard it would cause “exceptional hardship” to her church work.
Busfield is the vicar for the four Worcestershire parishes of Peopleton, Broughton Hackett, White Ladies Aston and Upton Snodsbury and is associate priest to a further 12 churches.
She admitted speeding on the A4104 Station Road in Pershore, Worcs., on February 8 this year when she appeared at court on Monday (5/11).
When JPs asked her if a driving ban would affect her ability to do her job, Busfield replied: “I cannot speak for the diocese.
“But I would hope that the knock-on effect would make them consider the sensibleness of appointing a priest to cover 16 parishes.”
She added that she would have to fork out on taxis to take her around her patch because there was no public transport available.
Speaking after the hearing, Busfield said: “I am very embarrassed about the whole situation, but the disqualification was a fair outcome for my speeding offences (all between 38-48mph) and my morning in court will certainly ensure that in the future I will be more aware of the speed limit of the road on which I am driving.
“I will be making every effort to fulfil all my parish commitments through a mixture of taxis, lifts and bicycle and I am fortunate that my parishes, the hospitals and crematorium are all within a relatively small area of Worcestershire.”
One parishioner in Peopleton, Worcs., who did not want to be named, said: “Lynn Busfield is a wonderful vicar and we are truly blessed to have her working so hard for us.
“She is devoted to her flock but in order to fulfil all her duties she is known for driving like a bat out of hell around the narrow country roads to avoid being late for appointments.
“I myself will be only too glad to ferry her around whenever I can.”