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Post : Wed 20 April 2022
The ’20 is Full’ founder said concerns raised in Buckley over the new lower speed limits need to be ‘understood and addressed’ and there appears to have been less ‘community engagement than elsewhere “.
Flintshire is one of eight ‘pilot’ areas across Wales where the national default speed limit on residential roads and ‘busy pedestrian streets’ has been or is being reduced to 20mph.
The Welsh Government has said making 20mph the default speed limit in residential areas in Wales will help “reduce accidents and save lives”.
Reduced speed limits came into effect at the end of February in Buckley, Drury, Burntwood, Alltami, New Brighton, Mynydd Isa and Bryn Baal.
There has been a well-documented backlash from local residents who say they were not properly consulted on 20mph speed limits despite Flintshire Council saying a “long period of informal consultations” had taken place.
Residents said the new speed limits targeted bad roads such as Liverpool Road, a major thoroughfare through Buckley.
Activist Rod King MBE is the founder of 20’s Plenty for Us, a ‘non-profit’ organization representing nearly 600 local groups campaigning for lower speed limits.
Mr King joined the Buckley residents Facebook group on Tuesday in a bid to answer questions about the 20mph limits.
Over 550 comments have been made on his post so far, with many criticizing Buckley’s implementation of new speed limits.
Some people have questioned Mr Kings’ ability to comment specifically on the new speed limits in Buckley given that he does not live there.
Others asked about the overall approach to the speed limit and the disregard for major thoroughfares and the problems with reduced speed on them.
Deeside.com asked Mr King for his views on all comments given, most were against the new speed limits.
He said he recognized they were a “cause of concern for residents of Buckley”.
“That’s why I’ve made the effort to reach out to residents through the Facebook group and offer to answer any questions to the best of my ability.” He said.
Mr King, who was awarded an MBE for his services to road safety, said: ‘The Welsh Government is committed to making 20mph the norm in Welsh communities and this has received cross-party support across the board. the Senedd.”
“The ‘trial regulations’ chosen to help formulate the practical details of the national roll-out were to show some problems.”
“In Flintshire, these may have been impacted by the way it was implemented with less community engagement than elsewhere, as well as the topology and particular characteristics of the town.” He said
Mr King said: ‘Resident concerns need to be understood and addressed.’
“As someone involved in the whole campaign for safer and more liveable streets, I am delighted to have the opportunity to see the comments of residents on the Facebook group.”
“Of this I am pleased that the Mayor of Buckley has requested a meeting during my planned visit to the town so that I can better understand the situation.”
He said: “I may not agree with all of Facebook’s comments, but I recognize some valid concerns.”
“I hope this makes a positive contribution to this important debate about how Buckley can better balance the needs and aspirations of all of its residents, including inside and outside motor vehicles.”
Flintshire Council leader Cllr Ian Roberts said last month: ‘We have listened to the concerns of local residents since the implementation of a 20mph speed limit in Buckley on February 28 and have called on the Welsh Government to consider reviewing the exception criteria that led to the introduction of a 20mph speed limit on major thoroughfares.
Cllr Roberts said: “Given the extent of the feedback received from the local community, we are delighted that the Deputy Minister has acknowledged this feedback and said that, although 20mph is currently the default, the Welsh Government will review the speed limit on major thoroughfares. reviewing the exception criteria ahead of the rollout of the scheme across Wales in 2023.”
“We appreciate that the issue is gaining more and more attention from the local community and have requested that the issue be addressed as a priority.”
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