20 mph sign

Results of 2013 consultation now available

Results – 77% support 20MPH zones in Addiscombe. Click here for more details

Many Addiscombe residents have contacted us regarding the issue of traffic on our residential streets. A lot of this traffic is from commercial vehicles and motorists using residential roads as cut throughs. This traffic impacts us all, not only terms of noise and pollution, but it also makes the roads less safe for our children and pets.

We believe that a simple and cost effective measure would be to introduce 20mph limits on our residential roads. This has proved popular in other cities and London boroughs and we believe it would suitable for Addiscombe.

Lower speeds improve streets both in terms of safety and quality of life. Evidence also suggests that 20mph zones prove effective that that motorists comply without the need for other road calming measures.

Lowering residential speed limits to 20 mph has been found to increase journey times by just 40 seconds, but decreases child pedestrian accidents by up to 70%.


  • More than half of road deaths and serious injuries occur on roads with 30 mph limits
  • Britain has the highest percentage of pedestrian road fatalities in Europe (22.5%).
  • Britain has one of the lowest levels of children walking or cycling to school in Europe.
  • Speed limits on Britain’s urban roads are 60% higher than Europe.
  • British parents consistently cite traffic speed as the main reason why their children are not allowed to cycle or walk to school.

We appreciate that not every road in Addiscombe will be suitable for 20mph, which is why we want to hear from you. Please let us know if you support 20mph zones in our residential streets and in particular on your road. Take a minute and complete and return the postcard or complete our survey online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/addiscombe20mph

We believe that 20mph zones will also encourage commercial vehicles and non-residents to use the main roads, rather than using our streets as ‘rat runs’ and make the streets more pleasant for cyclists, pedestrians and residents.

The Department of Transport reviewed and republished its guidance on Setting Local Speed Limits, Circular 01/06. This placed the responsibility for setting speed limits very clearly with the local authorities. The guidelines are not however rules and simply outline the aspects to take into account when setting speed limits. They also re-inforce the need to take account of vulnerable road users.

This change was the trigger for the move towards 20mph limits being set as the default for residential roads when Portsmouth became the first city in 2008 to fully implement a city-wide scheme. For a cost of just £475,000 it changed the speed limit on 1,200 roads to 20mph. As a result of this in 2009 after the first year it was able to report a 7mph reduction in average speed on the roads where previously the average was between 24 and 29mph. A result which the Dept for Transport found “statistically significant”. This caused the department to rewrite its guidelines for urban speed limit in December 2009 when it encouraged all residential streets to be set at 20mph.

The campaign group 20’s Plenty has highlighted some of the myths about 20 mph limits, which they can show are false

Speed Bumps

You can’t put in 20 mph without physical traffic calming. That is both unpopular and expensive. No-one will want it. NOT CORRECT

Slower journeys

If you slow traffic down to 20 mph then it is obvious that journeys will take 50% longer. This will cause delays and is not acceptable. NOT CORRECT

Police won’t enforce it.

The police will not enforce 20 mph. Therefore it will be ignored by motorists. NOT CORRECT

It increases Pollution

If you put in speed bumps and drivers accelerate between them, then this constant acceleration and braking does increase fuel usage. But where 20mph limits are put in place then this encourages steadier driving using less fuel with less pollution. It also encourages people to walk or cycle and therefore reducing their car-created pollution entirely. Hence it is NOT CORRECT that 20mph limits increase pollution.


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