June 6, 2022 1.30 pm

Council approves “unusual” speed limit hike in Lincolnshire village

A petition fell on deaf ears

Councillors have made the “unusual” decision to raise a speed limit in Saltfleetby despite calls for the council to keep it lower.

Lincolnshire County Council’s Planning and Regulation Committee on Monday voted in favour of raising the Main Road limit outside the former Saltfleetby Primary School from 30mph to 40mph.

The original limit was introduced nearly 25 years ago following a national policy change which required a maximum 30mph outside all statutory age schools in the county.

However, because of the closure of Saltfleetby Primary School in 2016 the road no-longer has to comply with the policy.

Conservative Councillor Ian Fleetwood, the chairman of the committee, said: “This one’s slightly unusual in that normally we’re going the other way around – we are [usually] trying to reduce the speed limit, but this time it is an increase.

“The school is now not in use at this location so certainly a little bit of stopping and starting in the vicinity will be different from where it’s been in the past.

“I’ve travelled this… long, straight road many times for various reasons over time and I’m quite happy with the proposals.”

He was seconded by Conservative Councillor Tom Ashton who said he had a number of similar roads in his ward.

Councillor Nigel Pepper told the committee: “I can’t remember sitting here before over the years debating an increase in speeds so it’s a new one for me, but there’s justifiable reasons for doing so.

“I can see why the public are perhaps up in arms about it but it is as I say justifiable. I also note that the local member supports it and he must know the area better than all of us.”

A report before the committee on Monday said a number of objections and an online petition had been received in response to the request from Saltfleetby Parish Council for the limit to be reviewed.

Concerns include “the volume and speed of traffic and a belief that raising the limit here will result in a further rise in vehicle speeds and an increased risk of accidents”.

The objectors believe the rest of the Main Road should instead become a 30mph limit the whole way along.

The report said, however, the 40mph change complies with the criteria and current policy.

Data shows no reported injury accidents nearby in the past five years.

At the same meeting on Monday, councillors also approved plans to reduce 40mph speed limits on Spilsby Road, Boston Road and Langton Hill in Horncastle to 30mph, following a request from residents.

These roads would not normally be eligible for a reduction, however the average speed of drivers on the roads meant they could be considered.