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Anger after speed limit raised outside Ushaw Moor school
COUNCILLORS are fuming after a committee voted to increase the speed limit on approach to a busy secondary school.
Durham County Council’s highways committee today (Friday, March 8) voted to raise the limit on part of Whitehouse Lane, in Ushaw Moor, from 30mph to 40mph – despite the area being used by vehicles accessing Durham Community Business College (DCBC).
During the County Hall meeting, Councillor John Turnbull pleaded with his colleagues to preserve the current 30mph limit, saying the increase would be very dangerous and totally wrong.
But his calls for further discussions were refused.
Afterwards, Coun John Wilkinson, who also supported the 30mph limit, said: “I’m very disappointed that this committee has taken no notice of what people in Ushaw Moor want.”
The 30mph limit will come into force further down Whitehouse Lane into Ushaw Moor; but Coun Wilkinson said this was “the wrong place.”
The committee agreed the new regime should be reviewed in 12 months’ time; but Coun Wilkinson said this “won’t mean anything”.
Whitehouse Court, which links Whitehouse Lane to DCBC, will retain its 30mph limit.
The change was part of a wider shake-up which will see 40mph ‘buffer zones’ introduced at both ends of the main road through Bearpark to slow traffic in that village.
Bearpark’s 30mph zone will be shrunk as part of this change.
A spokesman for Durham University, which recently temporarily moved its Durham Business School to nearby Ushaw College, protested the latter part of this proposal.
But Brian Buckley, the council’s strategic highways manager, said the 30mph limit at the Ushaw College end of Bearpark ‘lacks credibility’.
Coun Mark Wilkes said he had been pushing for the Bearpark changes for some time, they made absolute sense and should have happened years ago.
The changes were approved by 11 votes to one, with only Coun Turnbull voting against.
As a result of the changes, there will be no 60mph zone between Bearpark and Durham City. The eastern 40mph buffer zone will extend all the way to Toll House Road, where another 30mph limit begins.