Surveys are complete rubbish aren’t they? Some berk with a clipboard stops a few gormless shoppers and asks them some inane questions, carefully weighted to support some feeble pre-determined hypothesis, and then the results are loaded into a computer and get extrapolated into the opinion of some huge swage of the Great British public.
Which is why we end up with press releases making ridiculous claims that, and I’m quoting here, that “millions of motorists are ready to welcome 20mph city speed limits.”
Except, they’re not. What the survey actually found out was that 60 per cent of those who couldn’t think of an excuse to avoid the pollster think that 20mph speed limits are a silly idea. Which, last time I checked, was a clear majority – and, if you think about it for a minute, a blindingly obvious one.
The “millions welcome” line was doubtless grafted on later in the process when the car supermarket that thought up this survey, and which will be getting no publicity from me for doing so, realised that “Brits think 20 mph speed limit is an utterly stupid idea” was less likely to set newsdesks alight.