Residents of a north Suffolk town hoping to introduce a 20mph speed limit have received a significant boost in their bid for safer roads.
Earlier this year Suffolk County Council agreed a new policy paper, setting out criteria which must be met in order for villages and towns to apply for 20mph zones.
The paper sets out areas that would not be considered if they contained A or B class roads, unless there were exceptional circumstances. Eye Town Council formally applied to the county council in May to introduce the reduced speed limit in the conservation area of the town, which includes the B1077, Broad Street and B1117, Castle Street.
But a Speed Policy Development Panel (PDP) made an exception in Eye’s case, which was subsequently agreed by senior authority at Suffolk County Council.
County councillor for Eye and Hoxne, Guy McGregor, told the Diss Express the next step would be a meeting between himself, an area surveyor, and a representative of the campaign group to finalise a boundary, before it would be considered again by a county council portfolio holder.
He said it was hoped a 20mph speed limit could be implemented in the town “by the end of the year.”
“The great thing about this is that instead of being out of local funds this will come out of the county council’s funds,” he added.
Bridget Bloom, of the 20mph campaign group, said they were delighted with the news.
“We did have doubts,” she said. “We got a lot of support when it was first discussed by the cabinet of the Suffolk County Council and people said Eye should be made an exception, but until it happens (the exception made), you don’t know it is going to happen.”
She added the campaign group were “insistent” the proposed 20mph area should include Castle Street and Lowgate Street.
A spokesperson for the council said: ““As these roads are not part of the lorry route network the impact on businesses of slightly longer journey times will not be significant.”
A petition in Eye garnered more than 1,200 signatures in support of reducing the speed limit last year.