Wensleydale villagers back campaign for 20mph speed limit

Poppy Smith hands in the 20's Plenty Christmas card at County all in Northallerton

Residents of a Wensleydale village have backed a call for lower speed limits in residential areas.

Villagers in Bellerby are supporting the 20’s Plenty for Us campaign, which says a speed limit of 20mph is adequate in residential areas — unless it can be proved vulnerable road users would be safe with a higher limit.

It comes ahead of a new policy being drawn up by North Yorkshire County Council which could allow for lower speed limits in some communities.

Steve Singleton, from Bellerby Parish Council, said: “The speed reduction greatly reduces the risk of a collision and chances of escaping serious injury or fatality if a collision occurs.

“It’s already being adopted across Scotland and Wales. And Scottish Borders Council and Cornwall County Council — both rural areas like North Yorkshire — have commenced roll out plans.

“Bellerby sits on the A6108 between Catterick and Leyburn. There are issues around speeding vehicles entering and leaving the village and two blind bends to contend with.

“The NYCC policy due to be signed off in January could be vastly improved with the adoption of this measure and remain cost effective.”

A giant Christmas card with the 20’s Plenty message was handed in earlier this month by campaigners, including six-year-old Bellerby resident Poppy Smith, who is supporting the appeal with mum Charlotte.

Karl Battersby, corporate director at North Yorkshire County Council, said a 2017 survey showed mean speeds of 31mph in Bellerby and it was decided further action to reduce speeding was not necessary.

However, he added: “If residents feel circumstances now warrant a further assessment by the York and North Yorkshire Road Safety Partnership, they can submit a report online at www.northyorks.gov.uk/speed-limits-speeding-and-road-safety-concerns Our Richmondshire highways team would be happy to guide them in making their submission, and can be contacted at Area1.Richmond@northyorks.gov.uk

“Parishes can also request temporary vehicle-activated signs, which alert drivers when they are exceeding the speed limit.

“A revised 20mph speed limit policy is currently going through its approval process following a review by a task group set up by the Transport, Economy and Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee. The County Council’s Executive is expected to consider the policy early in 2022.

“However, the draft revised policy seeks to offer greater flexibility and a focus on place and community, particularly around schools.

“While decisions must be led by facts and figures, we recognise the need to consider any wider benefits a 20mph zone might bring.”

4 Comments

  1. Thank you and well done Poppy! I really hope we can get the cars going slower with a big 20 sign outside your village, and every other village and town in North Yorkshire, so that you will be safer as you grow older and want to cross the road by yourself safely in the future. We couldn’t let our children cycle or cross the road by themselves in Malton in the upper primary age, as they do much more in Edinburgh now in 20mph areas there, as the traffic goes too fast here at 30mph, so let’s make it better for you and many children like you.

  2. One question: How many fatalities has Bellerby seen in the last 5 years? How many serious injuries?
    Following the logic outlined here if cars were banned there would be zero risk of accidents, so why not go the whole hog? Perhaps they would also like to employ people with red flags to walk in front of the cars as they pass through?

  3. That would make a change! A Council using unfiltered, real facts to make a decision as opposed to making the facts fit the decision.

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