New speed limit introduced in Cheddar Gorge to improve safety

PUBLISHED: 09:00 21 September 2017 | UPDATED: 10:51 21 September 2017

Cheddar Gorge.

Cheddar Gorge.

Archant

The road through Cheddar Gorge has been made safer for drivers and pedestrians after the speed limit was reduced.

After years of campaigning from the police and parish council, the speed limit in Britain’s largest natural gorge has been reduced to 30mph.

Cliff Road, where the speed limit change has been introduced, was previously 60mph. The road runs along the bottom of the gorge and is the perfect track for ‘boy racers’.

Cheddar Parish Council and Avon and Somerset police have been working with the National Trust and Longleat – which owns and operates in the gorge – to get the speed limit changed.

Chairman of Cheddar Parish Council’s highways and open spaces committee Martin Kay said he hoped the change would have a positive impact on the village and its people.

A new speed limit has been introduced in Cheddar GorgeA new speed limit has been introduced in Cheddar Gorge

MORE: The parish council hopes the change will curb boy racers.

He added: “It was first approved back in April but it has taken a few months to get it off the ground.

“It is early days at the moment to say for certain what change this will have, but we have a lot of walkers and cyclists in the gorge so hopefully this will make it safer for them.

“The police will now be able to have more control of people speeding in the gorge and take action.”

Speedwatch in Cheddar GorgeSpeedwatch in Cheddar Gorge

MORE: The council, police and other interested parties have been working with car meet organisers.

A Somerset County Council spokesman said: “We have been working with various partner agencies for some time to look at ways to address antisocial driving.

“It was clear there was a desire for a 30mph speed limit and this was approved following comprehensive investigations alongside the police and local community.

“The new speed limit has now been in place for a month and has been extremely well received.”

Speedwatch in Cheddar GorgeSpeedwatch in Cheddar Gorge

MORE: Watch footage of drift trikers in the gorge.

In the past 12 months, police officers in the Somerset village have been cracking down on antisocial driving, which includes speeding, drifting, loud music and loud exhausts.

The police have already seen a noticeable decline in speeding offences on the road.

A police spokesman said: “ “We have been working closely with our partners for some time now to find sustainable solutions to the issues around antisocial driving in the Gorge.

“In the past year we have seen a reduction in the number of complaints from local residents and we are hopeful the reduced speed limit will have a further positive effect.”

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