Public order offence charges have been dropped against team chasing rider Mark Smith. The rider was arrested and charged on then prime minister Tony Blair’s last day in office, 27 June, for brandishing a placard that read “Bollocks to Blair” above the M4 motorway.

Mr Smith was due to appear in court on 24 October charged with “displaying any writing, sign or other visible representation which is threatening, abusive or insulting”. But, on 19 October, he received a letter from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) saying they were dropping the case.

“It beggars belief that this could go on for so long,” said Mr Smith. “I wasted hours waiting around in court, money on legal fees, not to mention what this has cost the taxpayer. I told the officer who arrested me at the time that the CPS has never prosecuted anyone over the word ‘bollocks’.”

Mr Smith has the right to request proceedings are reinstated against him, and is considering this option with his solicitor. “It might sound barmy, but I want my day in court now and I want to get to the bottom of whether the use of the word ‘bollocks’ is illegal,” he said.

In March businessman Tony Wright expressed his “total disappointment” to H&H after the CPS dropped charges against him for selling shirts emblazoned with “Bollocks to Blair” at the 2006 Royal Norfolk Show (news, 29 March).

Clothing company Splash paid an on-the-spot fine at the show for similar charges brought under section five of the Public Order Act. And in September 2005, a 20-year-old woman was stopped by police at the Midlands Game Fair for wearing a shirt bearing the same slogan. She was released without charge (news, 22 September).

A spokesman for the CPS told H&H: “Having looked at all the evidence, we decided we were unable to prove that it had caused harassment, alarm or distress to the drivers who saw it.”