Has Council Made U-Turn On Speed Limits?

It’s unclear whether a plan to introduce 20mph speed limits on St Mary’s is still going ahead.

Last June, Chief Technical Officer Neville Gardner presented details of how a lower speed limit could be introduced through Hugh Town and along Old Town Road as far as the airport turning.

This included details of the type and locations of any signs that would need to be installed and Councillors voted in favour of introducing the 20 mph speed limits.

They said road hauliers and emergency services would be consulted, as well as the general public, and a final decision brought back to Full Council.

However, over a year on, it’s unclear exactly what progress has been made.

Sergeant Colin Taylor says he spoke to experts at Devon and Cornwall Police shortly after he arrived here last year about how the 20mph zones could be enforced here.

They recommended that any zones would need to be accompanied by traffic calming measures, such as chicanes and bollards, to slow cars down. Colin added it’s force policy not to enforce 20mph limits without these measures as, he says, cars will just continue to speed on a straight road.

We asked Mr Gardner what progress had been made on the work and whether the consultation had started, but he declined to comment.

However a Council spokesperson said the Community Safety Partnership, which covers the Council, Emergency Services and Primary Care Trust, fully endorses the introduction of measures to reduce the speed of traffic in some areas of St Mary’s.

They’ll be further discussing this issue in the coming months, in particular the new speed limit proposals from the Department for Transport, currently under consultation.

They added that the Partnership is delighted at the Local Authority’s decision to appoint a ‘Lollipop Person’ for a trial period and they expect this will alleviate many of the concerns of local residents and school users adjacent to the Five Islands School entrance at critical times.

However, they said the route from the airport to the school is still one that needs further work.”

Sergeant Taylor told us that the implementation of the 20mph zones is the responsibility of the Technical Services Department, not the Community Safety Partnership and he’s pressing Mr Gardner for further details on progress.


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