A WELSH Government Minister has admitted that "not a good enough" job was done on the 20mph pilot scheme in Buckley. 

It has seen a blanket 20mph limit introduced in Buckley, and the surrounding areas of Mynydd Isa, Bryn-y-Baal, New Brighton, Alltami and Drury. 

This is with the exception of the A549 between Wylfa Roundabout and Dirty Mile, Dobshill.

The scheme is part of a pilot project which has been rolled out in eight areas of Wales, ahead of plans to introduce 20mph limits in all residential areas of Wales in the next couple of years

Following a backlash from many in the local community to the scheme, Lee Waters, Deputy Minister for Climate Change, spoke to the Leader on the matter.

Mr Waters was Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport when the plans for the scheme were launched. 

The Leader:

Responding to Buckley Town Council's claim that it was ignored by the Welsh Government on the matter, Mr Waters said: "There was clearly a consultation period, and the town councillors had the opportunity to make their feelings known.

"Regarding keeping all A, B and C roads 30mph, that's not what this scheme is about. The evidence is clear - reducing speeds reduces accidents, and saves lives.

"I'm sorry that people feel like they haven't had a say in this, and that it has been sprung upon them, and we understand the anger in Buckley that this has caused - but there are very good reasons for bringing this in. The difference between a child being hit at 20mph than 30mph can be life-saving."

READ MORE: Buckley: Leader readers slam new 20mph limit move

Mr Waters said the purpose of the pilot scheme was to test the speed limit against local circumstances.

"We know that Liverpool Road is a particular point of concern - and we will look at this and other roads like it and question whether they should be 20mph," he said.

"I'm happy to admit that we haven’t done a good enough job with it in Buckley, and we have developed an ‘exceptions process’ which determines when 20mph speed limits on restricted roads may not be suitable.

"When we launched the pilot we said would use this as opportunity to learn lessons to shape the national rollout. We will draw lessons from Buckley and the other seven settlements to look again at the approach for exceptions and review the criteria including for main arterial roads, such as Liverpool Road in Buckley."

He added: “We’ll learn from it and we’ll use that learning to change the main rollout next year.”

The Leader:

He said that he is aware of some the local reports of increasing reckless and anti-social driving since the introduction of the 20mph limit.

"There is no doubt that driving at 20mph feels very slow," Mr Waters said.

"It is very much going to take some getting used to, and there will always be some drivers who react badly to it. It will take time to change people's minds."

When asked on whether the 20mph limit in the Buckley area will be subject to enforcement measures, Mr Waters said: "In some areas there will be mobile speed cameras, and offending drivers will be offered a speed awareness course, or to speak to primary school children about why they were speeding.

"In Buckley's case, there will be a fixed speed camera installed."

On Friday (March 11), the Welsh Government published the results of its consultation on the matter. 

Just over 6,000 responses were received – 47 per cent were in favour of reducing the speed limit and 53 per cent were against. 

According to an opinion poll 81 per cent of the 1,000 people interviewed supported a reduction in the speed limit to 20mph.