Call for speed limit cut on Wellsway, Keynsham

March 03 2022
Call for speed limit cut on Wellsway, Keynsham

CAMPAIGNERS have launched a petition to lower the speed limit on a section of the Wellsway in Keynsham.

They are calling on Bath and North East Somerset to make the B3116 safer for road users and local residents following a number of accidents.

Keynsham Road Safety Campaign wants to lower the 40mph limit to 30mph up to the ‘Welcome to Keynsham’ sign on the town boundary.

Wellsway’s limit is currently 20mph from the roundabout to Manor Road, where it becomes 30mph for a little over 600 metres up to around 106 Wellsway, and then changes to 40mph. The group is also calling for flashing signs to alert motorists to the proposed 30mph limit.

And it wants a pavement to be installed from Uplands to Courtenay Road to enable pedestrians to access the Uplands Byway, which joins the Chew Valley walking routes.

Campaign group member Rachel Stokes told the Voice: “We are very concerned that the excessive speed of motorists on the blind bend at Uplands, combined with multiple residential access points on both sides of the road, makes this part of Wellsway extremely hazardous to cyclists, pedestrians and local residents.

“After over two years of discussions, prevaricating and empty promises from Bathnes highways and councillors, we are about to petition them in the hope of ensuring the safety of all road users.

“The petition currently has over 600 signatures, and we’re aiming to get to 2,000, as the B&NES regulations on petitions state that if we can get signatures from 1% of the electorate, they are required to have a debate in full council.”

The group states on its petition: “The bend at Uplands has very restricted visibility, and often catches motorists by surprise, resulting in a number of accidents in recent years. Given the proximity of houses to the road, it is not possible to improve visibility and therefore reducing speed is the safest option.

“Properties on both sides of the road have hidden entrances with restricted visibility, forcing residents to essentially block the road in order to pull out.

“This section of the road has seen an increased number of families with young children move into newly developed properties in recent years, and the current speed limit of 40mph is no longer appropriate for the volume of traffic entering and leaving these properties.Furthermore, Wellsway is extremely popular with cyclists, and motorists aiming to drive at 40mph often attempt to overtake them on this blind bend. It is only a matter of time before this causes a serious accident.”

The group adds: “This section of Wellsway does not have good width and layout, buildings are not set back from the road, and there is no segregation of road space, footway or crossing spaces. Despite this, Bathnes Highways Department have argued that ‘this length of the Wellsway is rural in nature and does not lend itself to a 30mph speed limit,’ and have declined to visit the site to discuss concerns with local residents.

“They currently plan to reduce the limit to 30mph only to the Homestead - this will effectively make the situation worse as motorists will still be accelerating out of the 30mph section by the time they reach the blind bend at Uplands.”

To find the petition, go to www.change.org and search ‘For a Safer Wellsway’.