20mph speed limits: Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I find out more about Welsh Government's 20mph legislation and why it is being introduced across Wales?

Please visit Welsh Government's website (external website)

Back to top

Will all roads in Denbighshire change to 20mph on 17 September?

On 17 September 2023, all Restricted Roads will change to 20mph.

Back to top

What is a Restricted Road?

Restricted Roads are roads that have street lights and which are currently subject to a speed limit 30mph.  Most of the roads in our city, towns and villages are Restricted Roads.

Back to top

What criteria will the Council follow when introducing Welsh Government’s new 20mph legislation?

The principle behind the new legislation is that 20mph will become the default speed limit in our city, towns and villages. The Welsh Government have provided criteria for making some roads exceptions to the default speed limit, please see Question 5 (below).

Back to top

Welsh Government has published 'exceptions criteria' which detail how highway authorities can set exceptions to 20mph speed limits on restricted roads in Wales. Can the Council make my road an exception?

The Welsh Government’s guidance is that if a road does not meet one of the criteria below, then it could be considered as a possible exception on the basis that it is very unlikely that pedestrians would cross that road. In practice, nearly all of the roads within Denbighshire’s city, towns and villages meet the last of the four criteria below (criteria number 4).

Welsh Government criteria:

  1. Is the road within 100 metres of a school or other educational establishment?
  2. Is the road within 100 metres of a community centre?
  3. Is the road within 100 metres of a hospital?
  4. Do residential or retail properties front the road, and exceed 20 properties per kilometre of road (i.e. 5 or more properties every 250 metres of road)?

Back to top

If my road is considered to be an exception, when will 30mph be reinstated?

We are currently making a legal document called a Traffic Regulation Order which will specify that 30mph is the speed limit on all roads which are proposed to be exceptions. This Traffic Regulation Order will come into force when the default 20mph speed limit comes into force. This means  that those roads being made exceptions will remain as 30mph.

Back to top

How many roads in Denbighshire will be granted an exception therefore enabling a 30mph speed limit to be implemented?

We currently have six roads which are proposed to be exceptions.

Back to top

If Denbighshire County Council were not to follow the 20mph criteria set by Welsh Government, and reverted a road back to 30mph, would the Council be liable to legal challenge if there was an accident?

Local councils cannot legally disregard criteria when applying speed restrictions to local roads. All speed limits are assessed impartially based on specified national criteria.

Back to top

Will all the signs be changed ready for the implementation of 20mph in September?

Yes, we have appointed contractors to undertake this signage work in readiness for the 17 September 2023.

Back to top

Will there be repeater signs to remind people they are in a 20mph area?

No, and such signs would actually be illegal. As per the highway code, unless there are signs to the contrary, the presence of street lights tells road users that the default speed limit applies, which will be 20mph as of the 17 September 2023.

Back to top

We have speed humps along my road to keep traffic speeds down, will these be removed when 20mph is introduced?

Road humps are generally a very effective way of reducing vehicle speeds and so there are no plans to remove them because of the default 20 mph limit. Road humps will normally have been introduced because there had been a number of road traffic accidents that occurred where excessive speed was a factor. Nonetheless, we will monitor the effectiveness of the new default 20 mph limit to assess its effectiveness on roads that do not have traffic calming.

Back to top

Who is paying for the introduction of 20mph on restricted roads in Denbighshire?

All costs associated with the implementation of 20mph across Wales will be met by Welsh Government by means of a grant to local councils.

Back to top

Related pages

20mph speed limits