Battle to lower speed limit on road between Horsham and Crawley

DM1873630a.jpg Campaigners are calling for a 40mph speed limit in Forest Road between Horsham and Pease Pottage. Parish councillor Steve Garley, left and Nigel Dean from Roffey Park Institute. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-180724-184757008
DM1873630a.jpg Campaigners are calling for a 40mph speed limit in Forest Road between Horsham and Pease Pottage. Parish councillor Steve Garley, left and Nigel Dean from Roffey Park Institute. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-180724-184757008

Campaigners are pleading for the speed limit to be lowered along a ‘dangerous’ road between Horsham and Crawley.

Colgate Parish Council along with business owners in Forest Road have called on West Sussex County Council to get the speed limit reduced to 40mph along the busy stretch between the village and Roffey.

However, when applying for a traffic regulation order the application has come up against a problem which has led the county council to suggest a 50mph limit may be more suitable.

Colgate Parish councillor Steve Garley, who has lived along Forest Road for more than 30 years, said the road is not like most and has asked the council to make an exception with their application.

“It might stop that fatal accident,” he said. “This road is not what it seems. Nowadays there are more than 5,000 cars so its busier than many A-roads in Sussex.”

The stretch is a 60mph zone and is used by many motorists as a cut-through to get to the M23 and A23.

Several businesses are based along the road as well as multiple houses and Steve along with Nigel Dean, director of Roffey Park Institute in Forest Road, have raised concerns about the dangers of vehicles trying to get in and out of premises in the area.

“It is very dangerous and there are many more vehicles coming on and off the road than the frontage would suggest,” Steve said.

“They are just about to build 600 houses in Pease Pottage and another 50 homes I have heard about plus North Horsham. It’s going to get busier and busier.”

He added there had also been several accidents along the road many of which involving deer.

The parish council has been working with the county council and Sussex Police to create an application for a traffic regulation order to get the speed limit reduced.

Steve said the parish council’s plans had been ‘passing with flying colours’ until they got to issues over average speed in the area.

He said the average speed checks had shown the area was over the threshold to change to a 40mph limit and the order would be stopped as ‘there were not sufficient police personnel to enforce any new rules’.

Steve has argued more officers would not be needed as the village already has an active Speedwatch group.

He said: “In the last 15 months over 1,200 drivers have been caught doing more than 36 MPH (in Colgate). We are a very successful deterrent. If Forest Road was made 40 MPH we would police that weekly too.”

The issue was raised at the North Horsham County Local Committee meeting on June 25.

Councillors advised the application should be changed to ask for a 50mph speed limit in the area and resubmitted.

However, Steve said the Speedwatch team could only monitor areas with limits of up to 40mph.