Search

School finally gets 20mph zone on busy Ipswich road after four-year battle

PUBLISHED: 15:36 02 October 2020 | UPDATED: 15:36 02 October 2020

The new 20mph speed limit outside St Helen's Primary School in Ipswich. Picture: SUFFOLK HIGHWAYS

The new 20mph speed limit outside St Helen's Primary School in Ipswich. Picture: SUFFOLK HIGHWAYS

Suffolk HIghways

Delayed plans for a 20mph zone outside a school on one of Ipswich’s busiest roads have been completed.

Pupils and staff at St Helen's Primary School back in 2017 campaigning for a 20mph zone in Woodbridge Road. Picture: GREGG BROWNPupils and staff at St Helen's Primary School back in 2017 campaigning for a 20mph zone in Woodbridge Road. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Work to establish the speed restriction outside St Helen’s Primary School, in Woodbridge Road, began in 2016, after fears from parents there had been too many near misses between motorists and pedestrians.

It resulted in a 1,000-signature petition and, despite delays where the proposals were not originally deemed to meet the criteria for speed restrictions, the hurdles have been overcome and the new zone finally installed.

MORE: Calls for 20mph speed limit outside Ipswich school

It was completed over five nights last month.

Suffolk county councillor Mandy Gaylard, who has been instrumental in bringing the scheme forward, said: “After a great deal of work and perseverance among all those involved with this campaign, I am absolutely delighted that we have been successful.

County councillors Sandra Gage, left, and Mandy Gaylard, right, celebrate the 20mph speed limit being installed in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich. Picture: ROBIN GAYLARDCounty councillors Sandra Gage, left, and Mandy Gaylard, right, celebrate the 20mph speed limit being installed in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich. Picture: ROBIN GAYLARD

“For four years I have been looking forward to this day when we are officially unveiling the 20mph zone.

“I thank the parents, residents, St Helen’s School and lead petitioner Emma Driver for their tenacity and determination.”

You may also want to watch:

Woodbridge Road is one of the key routes into and out of Ipswich town centre, connecting the town with Kesgrave, Martlesham and the A12 to East Suffolk.

The new 20mph zone in Woodbridge Road close to St Helen's Primary School, Ipswich. Picture: SUFFOLK HIGHWAYSThe new 20mph zone in Woodbridge Road close to St Helen's Primary School, Ipswich. Picture: SUFFOLK HIGHWAYS

Ms Driver said: “I started the petition in the summer of 2016 because I had lost count of the number of near misses that I saw along this stretch of road near the school.

“It really was just a matter of time before there was a serious accident, so I knew I had to do something.

“I’m so pleased that after such hard work and so many setbacks, we have been able to achieve this excellent result.”

In 2017, it was considered that, while not fitting the council’s criteria, the route was an exceptional circumstance, and meant work could progress.

Suffolk county councillor Mandy Gaylard, left, and lead petitioner Emma Driver, with her son Elliot, celebrate the 20mph speed limit being installed in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich. Picture: ROBIN GAYLARDSuffolk county councillor Mandy Gaylard, left, and lead petitioner Emma Driver, with her son Elliot, celebrate the 20mph speed limit being installed in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich. Picture: ROBIN GAYLARD

The public were consulted on the plans in August and September last year.

A Suffolk Highways spokesman said: “We’re delighted that the new 20mph scheme on Woodbridge Road in Ipswich has been completed.

MORE: School parents celebrate plans for 20mph speed limit outside school

“The scheme looks set to support pupils getting to and from St Helen’s Primary School more safely, as well as helping residents feel safer when travelling to and from the town centre.

“We thank residents and motorists for their patience whilst the scheme was being designed and during the construction period.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ipswich Star. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Ipswich Star