Wales is set to become one of the first countries in the world, and the first nation in the UK, to lower the default national speed limit on residential roads from 30mph to 20mph this month.

The Welsh Government passed the law in July 2022 which will see a default 20mph speed limit placed on restricted roads across Wales including in Powys.

Restricted roads are usually located in residential and built-up areas and often have street lights on them (placed no more than 200 yards apart).

When does the 20mph speed limit start in Wales?

The speed limit on most restricted roads across Wales will be reduced from 30mph to 20mph on September 17, 2023.

Eight communities have already trialled the 20mph speed limit:

  • St Dogmaels, Pembrokeshire
  • Llanelli North, Carmarthenshire
  • St Brides Major, Vale of Glamorgan
  • Central North, Cardiff
  • Cilfrew Village, Neath Port Talbot
  • Abergavenny, Monmouthshire
  • Severnside, Monmouthshire
  • Buckley, Flintshire

Wales 20mph map - all the roads affected by the speed limit change

From September 17, 2023, all restricted roads in Wales will be reduced from a 30mph to 20mph speed limit

The DataMapWales map below shows all the roads in Powys (as well as the rest of Wales) that will see speed limits reduced from 30mph to 20mph on September 17.

The map also shows roads which may retain the 30mph speed limit.


There may be some exemptions when it comes to roads changing from 30mph to 20mph

The Welsh Government website, explaining roads that would be exempt from the change, says: "We recognise not all roads with a currently at 30mph limit will be suitable to change to 20mph.

"These roads will be known as exceptions.

"Local Authorities will consider with their communities which roads should remain at 30mph and there will be 30mph signs to tell you this."

Why will roads in Wales be restricted to 20mph?

The Welsh Government, on its website, outlines five main reasons for the reduction in the national speed limit on residential roads from 30mph to 20mph:

  • To reduce the number of collisions and severe injuries from them (also reducing the impact on the NHS from treating the people who are injured);
  • Encourage more people to walk and cycle in our communities;
  • Help to improve our health and well-being;
  • Make our streets safer;
  • Safeguard the environment for future generations.

The speed limit on most restricted roads across Wales will change to 20mph from Sunday, September 17.