Further consultation needed on 20’s Plenty bid

FURTHER public consultation is needed before proposals for a 20’s Plenty Scheme for Worthing can be put forward for approval.

This is West Sussex County Council’s response to a Herald request for information on how much it would cost to implement such a scheme in the borough.

A recent meeting of Worthing county councillors gave the go-ahead for a blanket 20mph speed limit on the town’s residential roads, subject to public consultation.

The issue has sparked a lively debate on the Herald’s website and facebook page, as well as letters in the newspaper.

A contributor to our letters page, Jonathan Plail, of Boundary Road, Worthing, writes: “I am now convinced that 20mph around the residential streets will benefit everyone.

“The reduced stopping distances afforded at 20mph will significantly reduce collisions with pedestrians, and in the event of a collision occurring, would reduce the chance of permanent injury (there must be a cost saving for the NHS, too).”

John and Janet Kay, of Church Road, Tarring, wrote: “Most cyclists and pedestrians are also drivers who, if they felt safe, would cycle and walk more on local journeys.

“This would mean less congestion, and easier parking for people who have to drive, less pollution and fitter people.”

Lyn Roberts, however, wrote: “Drivers can’t do more than 20mph in Worthing any time of the day in a lot of areas!

“The roads are crowded and pedestrians do not know how to cross the roads, either; 20mph can cause damage to a car, too, as they are not made to go that slow in the first place.”

A spokesman for West Sussex County Council said: “The Worthing county local committee has made the provision of a 20’s Plenty Scheme one of its top priorities.

“In terms of drawing up the proposal, this is still subject to the outcome of a further public consultation.

“We need to consider all the different options for the proposal once those findings are presented to us.”

He added: “Our priority is to reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.

“The county council is always interested to hear representations from the community about concerns over road safety and speed limits.

“Monitoring of 20mph schemes in other places shows that some reduction in speed is possible, however, the main benefit appears to be in reminding drivers of the need to drive at lower speeds in residential areas.”