Plan for 20mph speed limit on every residential street in Harlow fails

News / Wed 13th Dec 2023 at 11:12am

A CALL to allow Essex County Council to impose a blanket restriction of 20mph across the county on residential streets has been shot down reports the Local Democracy Reporter.

Moved by councillor Dave Harris and seconded by Councillor Lee Scordis the motion from the Labour group had wanted the council to implement a council-wide 20mph speed limit on residential roads as “soon as is practically possible”.

If implemented it would have followed the Welsh Government that says the policy there results in  40 per cent fewer collisions, up to 10 lives saved and up to 2,000 people avoiding injury every year. It says the change also makes streets safer for playing, walking and cycling.

The Essex County Council labour group motion added: “Establishing 20mph limits in roads with schools should be treated as a priority. This measure should be comprehensive and cover all residential roads unless there are specific exceptions which would make this inappropriate.”

It also wanted to see an all-party working group to oversee the implementation of the policy and to help advise roads where the lower speed limit may not be appropriate.

However, Essex County Council full council on December 12 heard from the Tory administration that a blanket 20 mph restriction would be too prescriptive and that the current process of getting 20 mph scheme implemented through local highways panels left applications in limbo for too long.

Labour councillor Lee Scordis said: “I imagine we have had calls from residents who are very upset that drivers will use their road which is an estate road as a cut-through to avoid a main arterial road. We are not suggesting the main arterial roads as 20 mph, just the estate roads.

“Some of you may be able to remember a time when children were able to play on the road. We are not at that stage any more where the car has become the king in Essex.”

He added: “The people who have the action to make a difference on road safety is Essex County Council and Essex Highways, not the Safer Essex Roads Partnership which is a nice talking shop.

“We have the power to make a difference and it is really disappointing that we are not seeing action. “The reason local highways panels don’t work is there is no money. They are not funded enough.”

Councillor Tom Cunningham, cabinet member for highways said: “I do share the sentiment of many of my colleagues who can’t support this motion because of the imposition of the one-size-fits-all approach. One size does not fit all – particularly to do with these matters.

He added: “I fully accept the check and challenge that has been offered in this debate about the local highways panels and that is one of the reasons we will review the local highways panel to try and ensure that schemes such as these that members have referred to can be delivered quicker.,”

The motion failed by a majority decision.

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7 Comments for Plan for 20mph speed limit on every residential street in Harlow fails:

2023-12-13 14:17:14

What the hell was this all about! Nonsense there was no consultation with the public and this is another way Labour is showing their true colours! Attack the motorist again and again its all their fault! Yes the School areas are an issue but this is purely down to parking on zig zag lines and right outside School not someone doing 30 inside a 20mph limit! The issue is inconsiderate parking! outside schools! Give credit to most of the drivers on estates as they will drive to the condition of the road and lets face it with the parking all over the place going on there is not much room to speed! Next time someone has a brainwave like this I would suggest they go back to the people who put them in office and try not to be another dictator that this country already has enough of!

2023-12-13 14:36:37

With the amount of cars and vans in Harlow and its only going to get much much worse, drivers will be lucky if they can go even 10mph anywhere in the town.

2023-12-13 20:38:36

Drivers seem to be oblivious to road signage anyway. double yellow lines were put in to stop people parking on the pavements and blocking the roads to avoid walking a few minutes to the shops there's regularly 5 or more cars parked on them.

2023-12-13 21:43:06

Most people would agree the biggest problem isn't speeding drivers it's parking that is such an issue in Harlow, maybe those we elect could address matters that we the voters really care about.

2023-12-13 23:37:20

It's inconsiderate for people to park on the pavement especially when it's all four wheels.

2023-12-14 13:53:37

Come to Market St, Old Harlow where we have regular speeders, drug/drunk drivers. Sometimes so fast the doors rattle. Selfish gits tbh.

Harlow Citizen
2023-12-15 11:25:54

Can we get rid of speed bumps instead? Even on a 20mph signed road, people are driving 30-40 over them (speed bumps) and it shakes the house down... time, money spent renovating constant cracks on the walls constantly, at this rate I'm waiting to see who's home is going to collapse first.

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