INITIAL reactions to proposals to introduce a 20mph scheme in Pool-in-Wharfedale are in - and they’re not positive.

Leeds City Council is planning to introduce the lower speed limit on the village’s residential streets but not, as many had hoped, on its busy main roads.

Ward councillors have been asking residents for their views ahead of a formal consultation.

Councillor Barry Anderson (Con, Adel & Wharfedale) has now forwarded the comments he has received to the council’s Highways department.

The vast majority conclude that the scheme, by omitting the sections of the A658 and A659 that pass through Pool, would be a ‘waste of time and money’.

One respondent said: “This seems to be the wrong way round.

“We can have heavy wagons (and city-bound cars) thundering through Main Street and along Arthington Lane and Pool Bank New Rd at a dangerous, inconsiderate speed yet because they are A roads nothing will be done.”

Another described the proposal as a ‘ridiculous waste of time, money and effort’ that ‘does not address any of the real problems the village has with traffic’.

Another resident wrote: “None of these roads lead anywhere, they are cul-de-sacs, and the chance of exceeding 30mph is impossible as they are also not long enough.

“The only roads where a reduction would be beneficial to the village, and which would definitely make village life more bearable, are the main through roads - these have been excluded.”

Cllr Anderson said his own conclusions, based on the feedback, were that:

*The main roads need to be included for the scheme to receive public backing

*There is ‘significant concern’ about the financial viability of introducing the lower speed limit

*Residents are sceptical about potential benefits unless the 20mph limit is enforced

*Many feel that 30mph is too fast for HGVS, in particular, to be travelling along Main Street and Arthington Lane.

Concerns were also raised about the need for measures to address the air pollution being caused by the heavy volume of traffic passing through Pool.

Cllr Anderson said: “There may be other views that will come forward when the formal consultation starts if the council still wishes to proceed, or if they come forward with an amended scheme addressing some or all of the points that have been raised.

“I think there is still quite a lot of work that needs to be done by Highways in bringing forward a comprehensive highway safety strategy for Pool that meets the needs of the residents.”