County Councillors at Harrogate and Knaresborough constituency area voted last week by 9 votes to 2 (1 abstention) for a motion to support a phase one roll-out of 20mph throughout the area “where a benefit has been identified”.
The motion will go before the county council’s Executive in November and a report on the 20mph policy will go to the Transport, Economy and Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee in January.
20s Plenty campaigners are urging this to be upgraded to a County-wide change of policy to support default 20mph across the County, so replacing 30mph as the normal speed limit across settlements, with some exceptions where the needs of vulnerable road users are fully met. They point to widespread public support and the votes of another 128 parish and town councils right across the County.
The motion proposed by Cllr Warneken stated:
The Executive be advised that the Harrogate and Knaresborough Area Constituency Committee wishes a 20mph speed limit to be piloted throughout the area towns and villages in the constituency where a benefit has been identified and that the Transport, Environment, Overview scrutiny Committee when it considers the County Council’s 20mph speed limit and zone policy on 19th January 2023 to consider appropriate amendments to the existing policy to enable the pilot to be introduced.
Malcolm Margolis, the Harrogate spokesperson for 20s Plenty for North Yorkshire, who gave a speech at the meeting, said afterwards:
The strong vote for 20mph by Harrogate constituency councillors, together with support from 128 North Yorkshire parishes, shows that the adoption of 20s Plenty throughout the county is getting closer. The sooner it happens the more lives will be saved and casualties avoided.
Ian Conlan, Malton Town Council’s mayor, one of 8 North Yorkshire Town Councils supporting the campaign, and 20s Plenty campaign lead for North Yorkshire.
Ian will be presenting the progress of the 20s Plenty campaign in North Yorkshire in a presentation at 20s Plenty National Conference on the 20 October in Oxford, which has a special theme of 20mph in rural Counties such as ours, and also the National Roll-out next year of default 20mph in Wales.
Ian Conlon said:
Malton primary school in my area are clearly telling me that they would like 20mph right across the town, so that children and their parents feel safe walking and cycling to school, not just outside the school gate. We desperately need a culture change in our Highways department that values walking and cycling – a planned County default scheme will save money quickly in reduced wear and tear and potholes, with plenty of evidence of lower speeds.
We also need our Police and Crime Commissioner to listen to parishes when they demand better speed enforcement in our towns and villages and match other forces around the country that support councillors wishing to introduce default 20mph with appropriate and effective enforcement.