Councillors vote to reduce or extend speed limits
Six separate locations affected including A339 at Vodafone
WEST Berkshire Council recommended last week to restrict or extend the speed limits at five locations, including the A339 at the Vodafone roundabout.
A separate recommendation was also made on a proposal to reduce the speed limit on the B4000 at Stockcross to 50mph from 60mph, following safety concerns expressed by local residents.
In the last three years the stretch of road has been subject to one ‘slight injury’, involving a car running into the rear of another waiting to turn right.
The officer’s report on the proposed speed reduction at Stockcross points to a “long standing concern about safety”, particularly for vehicles turning right into the golf course and hotel.
Fourteen other road sections were also proposed to have speed limits either introduced or extended at a meeting of the speed limit task group in September.
The group, comprised councillors Graham Pask (Con, Bucklebury) and Billy Drummond (Lib Dem, Greenham), council officers and Thames Valley Police traffic management officer Chris Hulme and cut the list down to five locations, which council officers recommended be accepted at a West Berkshire Council meeting held on Friday.
The five other roads affected are:
-One-way system, East Ilsley, request for 20mph limit
-Church Hill, East Isley, request for 20mph limit
-A329 Purley Rise, request to extend existing 30mph limit
-A339 Vodafone roundabout, request to extend 50mph limit
-A343 Sandpit Hill, Newbury, request to extend 40mph limit
Not everybody is keen on the proposed changes, however. One Thatcham resident, Michael Dean, objected to lowering the speed limit at Stockcross.
In a letter to the council, he argued: “The road is largely straight, with good lines of vision, and even when exiting from the few side points, there is vision of another vehicle travelling at 60mph.
“The statement of reasons contains no accident data, let alone any evidence that any accidents, should they have existed, have been proven to be speed related.
“By all means, the residents of Stockcross should object if motorists are flouting their local 30mph speed limit but the mere fact they are local to a national speed limit road is surely not sufficient grounds to reduce the road speed to the detriment of other motorists.”
The recommendation given by councillors is subject to a "call-in" until Friday November 27, and a consultation phase before plans are implemented.