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‘20’s plenty’ campaign gathers momentum

A CAMPAIGN to install a 20mph speed restriction through Frome’s town centre is gathering momentum after a town council committee backed a proposal to put up to £10,000 towards the scheme.
At a meeting of Frome Town Council’s external affairs committee, councillors agreed to support the campaign, which will introduce the limit through the town centre, along Christchurch Street West, St John’s Road and Vicarage Street. They agreed to support the bid as well as invest up to £10,000 towards the implementation of the initiative. It is understood that the ‘20’s Plenty’ campaign will come before a full meeting of Frome’s Town Council on 27th June, where a decision on whether to go ahead with the scheme will be decided. Chairman of the external affairs committee Peter Macfadyen said, “This campaign started with Sustainable Frome, who wanted to find a way to reduce pollution from motor vehicles in the town centre. The police and county council are all on board with the idea. It’s an opportunity to make Frome a safer, greener place. “Interestingly, more and more places are installing 20mph speed restrictions. In Portsmouth it has been running successfully for years, as well as in certain areas of Bath and Bristol. “We understand that it may not cost £10,000, but that’s the maximum figure we will put up. For me personally, the centre of Frome should be just as much for the pedestrian as those in cars. Why should people enter the town centre and feel threatened by the odd car driving over the speed limit? The vast majority of drivers through the town centre tend to drive at 20mph anyway.” However, cllr Eve Berry commented, “Myself and my fellow local Conservative councillors are very supportive of making the streets safer for children and residents through reducing speed, especially in key high risk areas such as around schools, shops and other areas where residents have a very high foot fall. “What we do object to is £10,000 being designated to support the ‘20’s Plenty’ trial for what seems to be just a few signs on North Parade, Market Place, Bath Street, Christchurch Street East, King Street and Vicarage Street. We would encourage Frome Town Council to robustly negotiate a reduction in this cost as locally we have many other very good causes which require our urgent attention and funding, such as the youth services.” The campaign follows a successful bid to install a 20mph limit outside Berkley Church of England School, which was implemented last month. The bid was put forward by parents of the school who say, “the new limit will increase road safety outside the school.”