Speed limit bids met with varying success

Upper Beeding High Street, where a 20mph limit could be imposed
Upper Beeding High Street, where a 20mph limit could be imposed

BIDS to slow traffic across Steyning and Upper Beeding continue, with varying levels of success.

The Herald reported two weeks ago on Steyning Primary School’s bid for a 20mph school zone.

The move prompted a request to Steyning Parish Council to look at 20mph limits throughout the town.

Meanwhile, Upper Beeding Parish Council has recently agreed to press ahead with plans for a 20mph limit across the whole village.

David Barling, West Sussex county councillor for Bramber West, has told both councils he supports road safety schemes.

He explained the Upper Beeding scheme had a good chance of success, as long as there was significant support from residents.

There were only two entrances to the village, so there could be signage at both ends and no need for speed humps.

He added: “You have to get close to 20mph as an average before you can bring a limit in.”

Cali Sparks, a principal community officer at West Sussex County Council, explained the process to Upper Beeding Parish Council at its meeting on October 29, following issue of new guidance notes from central Government.

The council agreed to seek residents’ opinion via a questionnaire that would also cover the neighbourhood plan.

Steyning Parish Council’s highways and lighting committee discussed its 20mph request the same day, and noted it was usually not possible to travel at more than that in the High Street.

Committee chairman Mariella Alexander reported to the full council last week: “The wide view was that it was unenforceable.”

She said they supported the primary school’s campaign and they would revisit the issue if and when the school was given the necessary approval.

It was pointed out a full survey on 20mph limits had been done back in 2008 but it had met with fierce opposition from Steyning traders, who feared it would affect customers.

Cllr Sue Rogers, who was chairman of highways at the time, said: “It received a lot of support but West Sussex County Council measurements of speed showed the data did not support it.

“I am a big supporter of 20mph zones but it was a very difficult campaign.”