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Canterbury Society calls for more 20mph zones across the city, Whitstable and Herne Bay

By Jack Dyson

Campaigners are calling for 20mph speed limits to be imposed in residential areas across a district - before a “major accident” occurs.

The Canterbury Society is leading the bid to tackle pollution and improve road safety.

Group member Martin Vye says the restrictions would encourage more people to walk or cycle, but concedes they could prove costly.

Martin Vye is calling for 20mph speed limits across the district
Martin Vye is calling for 20mph speed limits across the district

“If people are going at 30mph, they’re going too quickly because it gives very little time for elderly people and children to react,” he said.

“We’re not anti-car, but cars do have two major effects – causing a lot of pollution and they can intimidate people who want to walk or cycle to the shops.

“You don’t get major road improvements if there hasn’t been a major accident. We want to stop accidents happening before they actually happen.”

Mr Vye says the Canterbury Society will work with residents groups to create a list of roads needing the limit most.

'If people are going at 30mph, they’re going too quickly' - Martin Vye

Councillors have previously called for 20mph zones in Herne Bay High Street and along Blacksole Bridge in Beltinge.

Mr Vye has already identified a number of the streets surrounding New Dover Road and St Dunstan’s in the city.

A Kent County Council spokesman says any attempt to introduce a 20mph zone will need to have strong support from locals.

Cllr Nick Eden-Green says the restrictions have proved popular in his Wincheap ward and believes they should be imposed in more residential areas.

Orchard Street in Canterbury is one of the roads Mr Vye believes should have a 20mph limit
Orchard Street in Canterbury is one of the roads Mr Vye believes should have a 20mph limit

He said: “The only way to make the city more cycle and pedestrian-friendly is to control the motor car a bit more.”

Canterbury City Council officers will prepare a report on how 20mph zones could be extended ahead of the authority’s next joint transportation board meeting in September.

Read more: All the latest news from Canterbury

Read more: All the latest news from Herne Bay

Read more: All the latest news from Whitstable

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