Crediton to Newton St Cyres 40 mph speed limit being seriously discussed

By Crediton Courier Contributor   |   Crediton Courier Contributor   |
Tuesday 21st June 2022 11:59 am
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The A377 road by Quicke's farm shop at Newton St Cyres (Image: Google Maps)
The A377 road by Quicke’s farm shop at Newton St Cyres. (Google Maps )

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THE speed limit between Newton St Cyres and Crediton could be cut to 40 mph.

Calls had already been made for an “introductory” limit of 40 mph approaching the village on the A377 from Crediton, which operates at the national speed limit of 60 mph before dropping to 30 outside Quicke’s farm and cheese shop.

“My feeling would be if the 30 was there, and the 40 was further back to the other side of Quicke’s, it would slow (the traffic) up before it came there,” local councillor Margaret Squires said in February.

Reporting back to the Mid Devon highways and traffic orders committee (HATOC) on Monday, June 20, Devon County Council highways officer Tony Matthews said speed checks carried out before the 30 zone, on the junction with Five Elms Lane, found an average speed of “43 or 44 mph”.

Mr Matthews added the “85 percentile speed”, which 85 per cent of vehicles go below and 15 per cent above, is 49 or 50 mph.

He said the county council’s speed compliance action review forum (Scarf) would meet next month to consider the request and hinted at possible success: “40 mph could be applicable”.

The possible speed limit reduction could also include Smallbrook, located near Newton St Cyres towards Crediton, after further comments from members of HATOC this week.

Cllr Squires (Conservative, Creedy, Taw and Mid Exe) said: “It’s so dangerous there – the school bus picks up children (and) there’s quite a few houses or dwellings there down the side route. And it’s so dangerous that it needs to have a speed limit there.”

Councillor Graeme Barnell (Non-Aligned, Newbrooke) told the meeting how he sees children from Crediton’s Queen Elizabeth School “running across the road with their satchels and bags regularly, trying to get across that road – it’s a nightmare”.

“I think 40 mph is the maximum speed limit we should be contemplating, and we really do need to look at the safety of the bus stops which is a critical issue for the children living here,” he added.

It was then highlighted that an extended 40 mph incorporating Smallbrook would leave only a small section of road at national speed limit, before it drops to 40 again at Downes Mill near Crediton.

Mr Matthews therefore suggested the original “introductory” 40 mph zone near Quicke’s or a blanket 40 limit between Crediton and Newton St Cyres were “realistic choices” for Scarf to consider.

The committee also looked at casualty statistics on the A377 stretch, following the death of motorcyclist Luke McLeod last month. The 42-year-old from Exeter was involved in a collision with a car near Downes Mill on Thursday, May 5.

Members were told it is the 230th most dangerous A and B road section in Devon and Cornwall, out of a total of 740, giving it an amber rating.

But it becomes uprated to red when only rural sections of road are taken into account, ranking the section of road 67 out of 498 based on this measure.

In the five-year period to the end of 2021, there were 11 recorded injury collisions on the road; eight with “slight” injuries, one serious and two fatalities.

So far in 2022 three people have been reported slightly injured and one person has died.

Ollie Heptinstall

LDRS

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