Work is beginning on changing many Powys roads to a 20mph speed limit from 30mph.

The change is part of the Welsh Government’s introduction of a default 20mph speed limit on restricted roads across Wales – those where streetlights are placed no more than 200 yards apart, usually located in residential and built-up areas with high pedestrian activity.

Work will begin on September 17 and will see Wales become the first UK nation to introduce a lower speed limit following in the footsteps of European countries, such as Spain, where 30km/h (18.5mph) is already in place.


In preparation for the changes Powys County Council will be working to remove some of the existing speed limit markings, or roundels, on the county’s roads.

Changes to signage will also be programmed, ready for the September 17 start date. Replacement roundels and other signage changes will continue to be introduced after the implementation date.

The Welsh Government has claimed reducing the default speed limit from 30mph to 20mph on these roads, will see a number of benefits including a reduction in road collisions and serious injury, more people walking and cycling and improvements to health and wellbeing.

“The Welsh Government have taken a bold move to implement the new 20mph default speed limit across the country,” said Councillor Jackie Charlton, Cabinet Member for a Greener Powys.

“But the benefits we can hope to see around slower driving speeds, improved safety and increased levels of cycling and walking, will go a long way to out-way and reluctance for change.

“Findings from other 20mph implementations in the UK and the trials here in Wales, show that even small reductions in average traffic speeds where people live and work can result in substantial reductions in collisions and serious injury, helping to make communities safer.

County Times:

“The new 20mph speed limit will also complement our increasing network of active travel routes across the county, where we encourage people to make short, local journeys on foot or bicycle, rather than the car.

"It is especially hoped that more Powys families will confidently choose to walk or cycle to and from school, knowing the roads will be safer.

“Although still some months away, September will soon be here, so work to prepare for the change will begin in earnest across the county as soon as possible to make sure we are ready for 20.”