IT’S been four years of hard campaigning, but villagers are rejoicing as a 20mph speed limit becomes official.
From next Monday, Westbourne, near Emsworth, will be a 20mph zone.
It will be the first 20mph zone in the Havant area, following the lead of Portsmouth and Chichester where many residential roads are 20mph.
There was a plan to make parts of Hayling Island 20mph, but the bid was dropped due to lack of public support.
In Westbourne, however, there has been huge support in a bid to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists.
Traffic through the village has grown considerably in recent years with new housing developments around Havant and Emsworth.
Fred Gordon, landlord of The Stag’s Head in The Square, said: ‘The problem is in the past six or seven years with the new development, the village has become a bit of a racetrack.
‘It’s a real problem. In the mornings, we have a rush-hour here. The general consensus is people are happy with the 20mph.’
Nicholas Hamilton, who works at Whistler’s fish and chip shop in The Grove, said: ‘I agree with it being 20mph.
‘With kids walking up and down, they can run out into the road.
‘At least drivers have got more time to stop.
It’s not a village any more – it’s starting to get more like a town.’
But he added: ‘I don’t think they will adhere to 20mph, especially with the youngsters driving.’
The 20s Plenty campaign was started by Westbourne mum Emma Weatherstone four years ago.
‘It’s great news,’ she said.
‘The objective is to make Westbourne a better place for residents to live and people to visit and make cycling and walking around our beautiful village safe for everyone.
‘We want to encourage families to walk or cycle to school and leave their cars at home. Many of the roads do not have pavements and currently the speeds people travel on the roads make it very dangerous.’