The Anonymous Widower

Speed Limit To Be Lowered To 20mph In Wales

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

These four paragraphs describe the policy.

Speed limits in built-up areas look set to be reduced from 30mph to 20mph in Wales from next year – a UK first that is controversial among some drivers.

Ministers say a 20mph speed limit will lower road collisions and traffic noise and encourage people to walk and cycle.

The slower limit has been divisive in areas where there have been trials with some motorists complaining of more congestion and journeys taking longer.

The proposed new law will be put before a Welsh Parliament vote on Tuesday.

I’m not sure that it will work.

I live in a 20 mph zone in Hackney.

But cars and motor bikes still speed through at up to 50 mph, as there is no visible enforcement.


July 12, 2022 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , ,


  1. The 20 mph speed limit is ignored by most drivers, as you say, because it is significantly slower and there is no enforcement. However, 50 in a 60 and 60 in a 70 is a much less onerous. I have done some tests on 50 in a 60 when driving to local towns, and find that I spend less time queuing at junctions, thus making little difference to travel times. The saving on fuel is really noticeable (my car reports mpg for each journey) and thus reduces pollution. Enforcement is easy and self funding (speed cameras and high fines dependant on the level of excess speed)

    Comment by John Wright | July 12, 2022 | Reply

  2. Bicycles go faster than this. Wales is heavy on enforcement, not for nothing is the A55 known as the Tax Scamera Turnpike.

    Daft on A and most B roads, bus routes etc., but sensible in appropriate locations/

    Comment by R. Mark Clayton | July 12, 2022 | Reply

  3. My view: Blanket application without specific risk assessments is just safety theatre (based on my observation in some London boroughs where the change has been applied across the whole borough except for selected arterial roads and roads “owned” by TfL rather than boroughs). And there usually isn’t the ability or budget to enforce by average speed cameras (e.g. between key choke points on estates).

    In many cases, I feel the signage is not that different in effectiveness than municipal Christmas decorations (which may be more effective!). Other traffic calming measures also more effective (but more costly and needed actual design).

    Happy to have 20mph when it addresses a real risk (i.e. there is significant use by pedestrians/cyclists, narrow roads relative to the traffic volume and mix).

    Use of cruise control in the car helps with compliance with speed limits in a less fatiguing way, if the traffic is flowing steadily.

    Comment by MilesT | July 12, 2022 | Reply

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