Joint proposal to cut speed limit on link road between Takeley, Hatfield Heath and Hatfield Broad Oak is moving ahead

PUBLISHED: 09:18 16 April 2018 | UPDATED: 09:27 16 April 2018

Hatfield Broad Oak, Takeley and Hatfield Heath parish councils wrote to Essex County Counil in January 2017.

Hatfield Broad Oak, Takeley and Hatfield Heath parish councils wrote to Essex County Counil in January 2017.

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A stretch of road which links several Uttlesford villages is “becoming more and more dangerous” due to high speeds and a large number of lorries travelling down it, a parish council chairman has said.

Hatfield Broad Oak, Takeley and Hatfield Heath parish councils asked Essex County Council (ECC) to reduce the speed limit from 60mph to 40mph on sections of the B183 which connects the villages, in January 2017.

Now, Hatfield Broad Oak parish chairman, Councillor Ken Swainsbury said: “It is such a busy road... We are trying to get some sense of control in our little village. It gets worse every day, it’s becoming more and more dangerous. We know that speed limits don’t always slow people down but it would give us a fighting chance.”

A letter sent on behalf of Hatfield Broad Oak Parish Council to ECC said: “The B183 is unsuitable for speeds in excess of 40mph because of its narrowness, excessive numbers of blind corners, and increasing volume of traffic. Community Speed Watch activity since 2010 has consistently shown that on both B183 entrances to the village many vehicles travel at excessive speeds. The parish councils cannot simply ignore the problem and hope that nothing further disastrous happens.”

The letter said that 12 vehicles per hour were travelling into the village at more than 40mph and there had been “numerous accidents and too many near-misses”.

Other proposals in the letter included putting up advisory signs stating the unsuitability for heavy traffic joining the B183.

Cllr Swainsbury added: “The idea outcome is to ban lorries, and to have a weight limit after the bridge in Takeley, over the old railway line- that would take the lorries out of the village.”

“We have tried lots of thing to slow down the traffic in the road, but we can’t do anything other than laying down in the road ourselves.”

The proposal to reduce the speed limit was registered in July 2017 with the Uttlesford Highway Panel, which is responsible for deciding priorities for road works in the area and is currently at the ‘validation’ stage- where initial assessments are made from observational data, such as vehicle numbers and speed surveys.

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