Zac Goldsmith faces driving ban after being caught speeding twice in five weeks

Lord Zac Goldsmith faces a likely driving ban (PA Archive)
Lord Zac Goldsmith faces a likely driving ban (PA Archive)

Former Cabinet minister Zac Goldsmith is facing a driving ban after he was caught exceeding the speed limit in a 20mph zone.

The Tory peer was recorded speeding twice in the space of just over a month this year, in incidents in Twickenham and Chelsea.

On both occasions, he was behind the wheel of a VW Golf when it was caught on speed cameras set up to help police London’s road network.

On April 27, Lord Goldsmith was driving along Chelsea Embankment at 29mph — on a stretch of road which has had a 20mph limit since 2021.

The speed limit was introduced as part of the Mayor’s “vision zero” campaign to try to cut out deaths on London’s roads by 2041.

Just over a month later, on May 31, Lord Goldsmith was caught again as he drove at 46mph on the A316 in Twickenham, which has a 40mph limit.

He was prosecuted through the single justice procedure for both offences, with the cases being dealt with behind closed doors.

Court papers show Lord Goldsmith admitted to police that he had been behind the wheel on both occasions.

Zac Goldsmith was caught speeding in his VW Golf (Handout)
Zac Goldsmith was caught speeding in his VW Golf (Handout)

A court official told the Standard that Goldsmith had pleaded guilty in writing to both offences, and offered no mitigation. Sentencing has been adjourned until December when a driving ban will be considered.

The peer will have the chance to attend court and argue to keep his licence. This is not his first run-in with the law. In 2014, he was banned from driving after being caught speeding three times in the space of three months.

Lord Goldsmith ran unsuccessfully against Sadiq Khan to be London Mayor in 2016. He served as a minister in Boris Johnson’s government after being elevated to the House of Lords as Baron Goldsmith of Richmond Park. He resigned from Rishi Sunak’s government in June over what he described as an “apathy” towards the environment.

He is the latest big name to be prosecuted under the single justice procedure, which was introduced in 2015 to allow courts to sit in private and deal with cases based on paperwork alone.

However, the system has been branded “conveyor belt” justice amid evidence of magistrates convicting and fining defendants in less than a minute.