20’s Plenty for Dolphinholme

20mph is the widely recommended speed limit for urban and village streets where people live

The ‘20’s Plenty for Dolphinholme’ is a campaign supported by the Parish Council to lobby Lancashire County Council (LCC) to implement a single, 20mph speed limit throughout the village of Dolphinholme.

The established mix of speed limits within the village were designated a very long time ago and no longer meet with current LCC local authority policy or best practice for road safety standards. Since their implementation, the village has seen significant growth and subsequent increase in both the volume and diversity of road users. Coupled with recent societal changes in the amount of time spent at home and more people looking to swap short car journeys with more sustainable methods, the speed limits have never seemed more out-dated and at odds with the notion of the highway as an inclusive space for all.

Historical speed limits were set at a national level and strongly biased from the perspective of the motorist, with little regard for local considerations, other classes of road user, children, the elderly or indeed neighbouring residents. Implementing 20mph speed limits in residential areas has shown to have very little impact to vehicle journey times, yet significant community and environmental benefits, such as reduced traffic noise and lower localised vehicle emissions, with the primary benefits gained around road safety. A reduction in speed reduces both the likelihood and severity of an accident, meaning a significantly lower overall chance of an accident occurring and less severe injuries should the worst happen. Statistical evidence has shown that reducing speed from 30mph to 20mph increases the likelihood of survival from a vehicle/pedestrian accident by over 7 times.

The Dolphinholme campaign has partnered with the highly successful national ‘20’s Plenty’ campaign and very much hopes to achieve the same aims within the village, that is to instil a cultural change in driver behaviour with respect to vehicle speed, in much the same way that the national ‘Don’t Drink and Drive’ campaign did for driving under the influence of alcohol and ‘Clunk, Click, Every Trip’ for the wearing of seatbelts. ‘20’s Plenty’ is not in favour of physical traffic calming measures such as speed humps or fixed cameras, instead focussing on delivering a sustainable reduction in vehicle speed in residential areas through communication and education of the benefits, and mutual respect for all who share the road network and the areas around.

For further information please visit 20’s Plenty for Us (20splenty.org) or www.rospa.com/road-safety/advice and consider showing your support by adopting a 20mph driving limit in built-up areas.

Author – Peter Mather