Anger as bid to reduce limit on Preston road is rejected

Disappointed: Tony Jackson, of the Longsands Community Association, which wants the speed limit to be reduced
Disappointed: Tony Jackson, of the Longsands Community Association, which wants the speed limit to be reduced
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For years it has been one of Preston’s most unusual roads.

Part way along busy Longsands Lane, in Fulwood, the speed limit changes from 40mph to 30.

And residents in the heavily populated area have been campaigning for years to have the entire road made 30mph, fearing the volume and speed of traffic using it means it is only a matter of time before there is a serious accident.

But today it was revealed the hopes of homeowners and community campaigners have been dashed, after highways chiefs said they would not review the road and the different limits would stay.

County Coun Michael Welsh, who represents the area at County Hall, wrote to highways boss Tim Ashton on behalf of residents asking if the change could be looked at.

But despite a current County Council campaign to make every residential road 20mph, Coun Ashton said the road was too heavily used and there was no case for lowering speeds.

He said: “Since the 2007 review there have been no major changes to this length of Longsands Lane that would support a reduction of the current speed limit from 40mph to 30mph.

“The changes that have taken place are improvements to pedestrian facilities which include the installation of a signalised crossing near Squires Wood improving pedestrian provision.

“Improvements of this nature can often provide greater benefits to users than changing the speed limit for a short length.”

He added: “Longsands Lane is a secondary distributor road and is viewed as an integral part of the local strategic highway network as a route linking the M6 junction 31a to Preston city centre and the industrial areas to the north east of Preston.”

He said he was “unable to support a change in the speed limit at this time.”

The response today sparked disappointment among community leaders, who claim there is a clear case for reducing the limit.

The road is 40mph from leaving the M6 motorway to the Anderton Arms roundabout.

Coun Stuart Greenhalgh, who represents the area on Preston Council said: “Longsands Lane dissects a large population of housing with more than 2,000 people. It is absolutely crazy.

“They keep saying it is a feeder road but Garstang Road is a feeder road and that is 30mph.”

Tony Jackson, chairman of the Longsands Community Association, added: “Stuart Greenhalgh has been pushing for this for four years and we back him 100 per cent. It is a problem with people coming off the motorway too fast and thinking they are still on the motorway. The residents have complained about it.”

But County Coun Welsh said: “His letter is admirably clear and I think that we must now regard this matter as closed.”