A procession of speakers at the sixth annual 20’s Plenty for Us conference last week made the case for 20mph in a series of “announcements that will shape the future of Britain’s streets”.
Transport for London used the conference, held in Cambridge on 12 March, to announce a series of 20mph pilots on sections of eight Red Routes across the Capital.
Chris Boardman MBE, British Cycling policy advisor and Olympic gold medallist, called for a national 20mph speed limit, telling delegates he doesn’t allow his children to cycle alone. “We all deserve 20mph limits. Why should people even have to campaign for them?”, he asked.
Councillor Lewis Herbert, leader of the host city’s council, told delegates that 20mph is “key for non-car travel options to become even more attractive for a rising population”.
Rachel Christie, Manchester City Council’s strategy manager, announced that an additional 1,800 of the city’s roads would go to 20mph, while Nicola Wass, Liverpool’s “20mph social marketing guru”, told a story of “behaviour change and engagement through pictures and videos of children”.
Living Streets’ Joe Irvin described walking as “the glue of transport”, and transport journalist Christian Wolmar linked “car culture with increasing social and environmental problems”.
Rod King MBE, founder of 20’s Plenty for Us, announced a timetable for the national speed limit to go 20mph, using the slogan “Total 20 by 2020”.
He told delegates: “The Government can’t afford to waste tax payers money forcing local authorities to buy repeater signs for 20mph when only a few roads will stay 30mph. It makes sense to only sign the faster roads.
“Places like Birmingham and Edinburgh would save millions with a DfT plan to go 20 nationally.”