Faversham Town Council’s 20’s Plenty Committee last night voted to to re-affirm its wish to see slower speed limits across the town, with a 20mph limit on residential roads.
The Town Council, which needs Kent Highways to sign off the scheme, will push for changes to be made next year.
The unanimous vote of councillors present was proposed by new St Ann’s ward Councillor Julian Saunders and seconded by Abbey ward Councillor Antony Hook MEP who has pushed for slower speed limits since he was elected to the Town Council in January 2017.
Last May, Liberal Democrats won 11 out 14 seats on the Town Council with a commitment to press forward with 20mph speed limits, subject to everyone in the town having a chance to have their say. Earlier in the year, Councillor Hook lobbied for Kent County Council to make its rules on 20mph scheme less restrictive.
Councillor Eddie Thomas is chair of Faversham Town Council's 20's Plenty Committee. He said, “The evidence is clear that slower speed means fewer lives are lost on the road. There are fewer accidents and when they do occur injuries are less severe.”
“20mph limits are backed by the British Medical Association which represents doctors and ROSPA, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.”
“Changing local speed limits to a lower speed will make everyone safer.”
Councillor Hannah Perkin said,
“It’s really important that everyone has their say locally on this. We need to have some further discussions with Kent Highways about the details of the scheme and then there will need to be public consultation, in which everyone’s opinion will matter.”
Councillor Chris Williams said,
“I back this idea not just because of the improvement to safety but there is also a benefit to air quality and to health. Where the speed is lower people feel better able to walk and cycle. Studies have shown that happens when you lower speed limits.”
Councillor Antony Hook MEP said, “A lot of work has gone into this for a long time. We need to make it happen and that must be next year. We cannot wait to make our streets safer in Faversham.”
Meetings of the Town Council’s 20’s Plenty Committee are open to all residents to attend.
This November, Councillor Hook will attend the European Children’s Road Safety Conference in Brussels, provided Brexit has not taken place by then, which would prevent him attending.
Councillor Hook said, “I hope the conference will give me many good ideas from across Europe on how we can make children safer on our streets.”