Nottingham

The Nottinghamshire village with eight speed limits

Speed limits at the entrance to Zouch
Image caption The outskirts of the village are a 50mph zone
The 40mph sign on the edge of Zouch.
30mph speed limit sign in Zouch
Image caption Before turning to 30mph...
Another 40 limit
Image caption ... and then back up to 40mph
National speed limit sign.
Image caption As you leave the village, you pass a national speed limit sign
Back to a 40mph limit.
Image caption But at a junction less than a mile outside the village, the speed drops to 40mph
Back to a national speed limit
Image caption Upon rounding the corner on to the A6, the national speed limit applies once again
Entrance to Hathern
Image caption While in the other direction, the speed limit drops to 30mph as you enter the neighbouring village of Hathern

A motoring organisation has said a Nottinghamshire village which has eight different speed limits in just over a mile of road may be confusing drivers.

The village of Zouch, on the Nottinghamshire-Leicestershire border, has seven different limits between itself and the next village of Hathern.

A further speed limit lies in the opposite direction on the A6 towards Kegworth.

The county council said it had imposed the limits for safety reasons.

'Myriad of speed limits'

Paul Watters, head of roads policy with the AA, said: "It's one of the worst instances we have heard of, but we live in an age of a myriad of speed limits.

"If there are too many different speed limits, drivers may feel confused. They tend to watch the signs and not the roads, and that can cause accidents.

"As a driver, you shouldn't have to keep referring to what the signs say. You should be able to judge what the speed is by the road and the environment.

"Consistency is always better. We believe in rationalisation and making it as easy as possible for drivers to comply with the limits."

Jacky Ashley, landlady of the Rose and Crown pub in the village, said she found it difficult to remember which speed limit she was driving in even though she was familiar with them.

However, she said she hoped the limits would make drivers slow down.

"We're just a little hamlet and people drive down the main road far too quickly," she said.

'De-cluttering'

According to the parish council, Zouch has a population of 53 people. The village of Hathern lies just over the border in Leicestershire.

Leicestershire county councillor David Snartt, who chairs Charnwood's highways forum, said he was looking at ways of reducing signage in the district.

He said: "We should try not to confuse drivers, especially if they are not familiar with the road. It's a balance between highway safety and de-cluttering."

Chris Charnley, from Nottinghamshire County Council's highways division, said: "Originally the majority of the main road - the A6006 - was 60mph. In 2005, a 50mph limit was imposed to the east of Zouch as part of an accident remedial scheme.

"At the same time a 40mph limit was imposed through the village. The aim of the scheme was to manage speed which had been identified as a contributory factor in incidents.

"Last year, a 30mph speed limit was introduced to cover the built area. This is similar to the situation in Hathern where a 30mph speed limit exists with a 40mph buffer."

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