Plans to reduce the speed limit on key roads in a Wiltshire town centre to 20mph will be implemented in the coming months.

In January Wiltshire Council approved a proposal to change the speed limit on 18 roads in Devizes to 20mph, following a public consultation.

The scheme covers several of the busiest roads through the centre of town, including sections of the A360, such as Long Street, Northgate Street, St Johns Street, and The Market Place.

The decision comes after concerns raised by the local community sparked a consultation process, and the plans are set to be implemented by late spring of this year.

Cllr Caroline Thomas, cabinet member for transport, said: “In January a request to introduce a 20mph speed limit on a number of roads in Devizes was considered and approved. 

“The proposed changes were subject to formal consultation that ended on September 23, 2023, with the majority of comments received supporting the proposed change to the speed limit.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The Market Place is one of the affected roadsThe Market Place is one of the affected roads (Image: Newsquest)

“The speed limit on all the roads affected will be reduced in late Spring 2024.

“Prior to the introduction of the new speed limit, the appropriate signage and road markings will be installed to alert motorists to the change of speed limit.”

Only 20 items of correspondence were received during the consultation, with 14 expressing support and just four objecting.

Many respondents spoke in favour of the proposal believing it will make the area safer for road users and reduce air pollution.

One said: “Reducing the speed of road traffic can significantly improve safety for other road users, including pedestrians and cyclists.”

Another added: “This is an excellent scheme. Traffic speeds can be far too high, especially on Long Street and Station Road.”

Those who objected raised concerns that safe driving would be “criminalised”, and their commutes would be lengthened.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The Market Place is one of the affected roadsThe Market Place is one of the affected roads (Image: Newsquest)

Cllr Thomas says the reduction supports the council’s commitments to empowering people to live safe, active lives, and becoming carbon neutral by 2030.

She added: “The speed limit reduction is intended to improve road conditions on these roads and is in line with national guidance.  

“Collectively, these changes should provide a positive impact on road safety.”

A full list of the affected roads can be found below.

A360 Long Street (Part)

A360 Northgate Street (Part)

A360 St Johns Street

A360 The Market Place

Bridewell Street

Castle Lane

Church Walk

Commercial Road

Couch Lane

Hare and Hound Street

High Street

New Park Road

Sedgefield Gardens

Snuff Street

Station Road (Part)

The Market Place (Service Road)

Victoria Road

Wine Street