THE Leader of Flintshire council has refused to back a petition calling for a U-turn on the 20mph rollout.

At a full meeting of the Council on Tuesday afternoon, Hawarden: Aston County Councillor Helen Brown asked an urgent question of the authority's leader, Cllr Ian Roberts, over whether he will join the growing number of people signing a petition to call for the new 20mph rules to be scrapped.

She said: "Will the Leader of Flintshire County Council and his cabinet join the thousands of Flintshire residents to call for the 20mph to be rescinded by Mark Drakeford?"

Cllr Roberts responded: "I don't know what the cabinet may do - some of them may have signed it for all I know.

READ MORE:  A convoy of cars protested the 20mph scheme outside County Hall in Mold during the meeting

"I do happen to know what the Leader of Flintshire Council will do.

"We live in a democratic society and we are all entitled to our opinions.

"Yes, it's slow. Yes it takes some getting used to.

"But on a personal level, when I voted for Welsh Labour at the last Senedd elections, I knew what was in the manifesto - and this was quite clearly in the manifesto.

"So no - I will not be signing and I certainly haven't signed the petition."

Cllr Roberts told the chamber that he and his wife had decided to "get away from the 20mph" issue last week, and so visited the Wirral.

But, he explained: "As we drove into Heswall, there are 20mph signs on the main roads.

"Down further into West Kirby, 20mph. In fact there was even one blacked out where someone had sprayed over it, like Wales.

"All the way through to Hoylake - 20mph.

"I am just warning anyone in the council, if you're hoping to get away from 20mph by going over to the Wirral, you're not going to escape it."

Cllr Brown replied: "Slower speeds result in higher fuel consumption and higher emissions, and it's not gone unnoticed that fuel prices are rising daily at the pumps.

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"We hear that the Senedd has plans for imposing further speed restrictions in our communities.

"People travelling to work, bus users and taxis are all having their daily routines lengthened - business and tourism are being affected and drivers are admittedly focussing on speedometers rather than the roads.

"Drivers are being totally confused by the signs that have been placed and some are actually driving at 15mph in some places as they are confused and not wanting a fine.

"This is causing absolute mayhem."

Cllr Brown told the council Alyn and Deeside is one of the most signed areas on the record-breaking petition to the Senedd over the 20mph scheme.

"People will no longer be ignored," she said.

"The message is loud and clear.

"Since when did the Senedd think it is ok to impose laws without asking us what we think?

"Do you agree with me that in the name of democracy, a full consultation to every household in Wales should have taken place?"

But Cllr Roberts said: "On the issue consultation, I don't think personally that there is any greater consultation with the public than an election.

"People had the opportunity to vote on the policies that were in the manifesto."