Nottingham

Notts County owner Alan Hardy banned from driving

Alan Hardy Image copyright PA
Image caption Alan Hardy took over as chairman of Notts County FC in 2017

The owner of Notts County has been banned from driving after admitting speeding at 77mph in a 40 zone.

Alan Hardy, 54, was caught in his BMW hybrid car on the A52 Clifton Boulevard in Nottingham in March.

He told Nottingham Magistrates' Court he was "the busiest person in the world" and needed to drive to appointments around the country.

Disqualifying him for three months, Judge Leo Pyle told him "the rules of the road apply to everyone".

Hardy had been driving through roadworks on a dual carriageway where the speed limit had been reduced.

Prosecuting, Peter Quinn, said: "There were quite a number of clearly marked 40mph signs on that stretch of road and even a sign making it clear why."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Hardy said his business and family would suffer as a result of the driving ban

Hardy is chief executive of office design firm Paragon Interiors and the owner of Nottinghamshire Golf and Country Club.

He described to the court his busy diary, driving at short notice to meetings and sites and taking his children to extra-curricular activities.

He also said he suffered from "terrible motion sickness" when sitting anywhere but the driver's seat.

Defence counsel, Laura Hocknell, said: "He was driving from one office to another and didn't see the signs until it was too late, and by the time he saw the signs he took the view it would have been dangerous to slow down."

Before the hearing Hardy already had 11 points on his licence.

He has previously been vocal on social media about speeding fines and parking tickets.

Last month he told BBC Radio Nottingham mobile speed cameras were money-making and added: "I think it is wrong to say that if you are going to speed, you are going to cause an accident."

In court on Friday, he said: "It's not like I leave a trail of destruction behind me.

"This was a temporary lack of concentration and perhaps I need to change my car."

But the judge said within days of speeding Hardy was caught committing two further offences.

He added: "That speed limit was there to prevent accidents. The signs were in prominent places and there was a large sign explaining the reasons for that limit."

Hardy was also fined £3,220 and given a further six points on his licence.

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