Is short close’s 50mph limit country’s highest?

DM1616374a.jpg Ancren Close, Ferring, West Sussex. Photo by Derek Martin. SUS-160314-183902008
DM1616374a.jpg Ancren Close, Ferring, West Sussex. Photo by Derek Martin. SUS-160314-183902008

IT IS just 100 metres long – but a Ferring close could hold the record for the highest speed limit on a short road at a rapid 50mph.

County councillors have moved to close a legal loophole, after it was discovered some streets in the village technically had a speed limit of 60mph, due to a lack of signs and traffic orders.

But while new orders will allow police to enforce a 30mph limit, Ancren Close will remain at 50mph to avoid cluttering the street with signs and creating unnecessary costs.

County councillor for East Preston and Ferring, Peter Evans, said: “Ferring has suffered previously from a mishmash of speed limits in the village.

“Some parts have got a traffic regulation order (TRO) that limits the speed to 30mph that dates back to 1937 but the village has expanded and the TROs haven’t.

“Parts of the village are actually 60mph.”

A report to the joint eastern Arun area committee stated many of the village’s roads are maintained privately.

An order enacting 30mph limits was made in 1937 but repeater signs in many roads were not maintained – with ‘no evidence’ any have been present in the past 20 years.

Unofficial 20mph road markings have also been painted in places. Council officers explored the possibility of a 20mph limit but the village was deemed unsuitable.

The report notes Sussex Police has not been able to take action against motorists because the existing orders were not considered ‘robust’.

The new traffic regulation orders, agreed by the committee, will confirm 30mph limits throughout the parish.

Carole Robertson, chairman of Ferring Parish Council, said: “Parking and inappropriate driving are two of the biggest complaints we get. It is constant.

“We would have liked 20mph but the choice wasn’t 30 or 20 – it was ‘do you want a 30 or stay unregulated’?”

Mr Evans said including Ancren Close in the new order was not needed, adding the length of the road would make slower speeds self-enforcing, while the cost of the paperwork would not be worthwhile.

From a standing start and assuming constant acceleration, a one-litre Citroen C3 could reach 50mph centimetres short of the end of the close. A more powerful Bugatti Veyron, capable of 0 to 50mph in 2.2 seconds, could reach the speed limit with around 75 metres to spare.