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FOLLOWING the South Chichester County Local Committee’s decision on November 1 to proceed with formal public consultation on ‘20’s Plenty for Chichester’, I would like to publicly thank all those 3,091 people who have signed the 20’s Plenty for Chichester petition so far.

I would also like to thank the 40 local organisations who gave us letters of support including schools, churches, residents’ associations, GP practices, the A&E Department at St Richard’s Hospital, the Ambulance Authority and many more.

This widespread support successfully convinced the county council committee to consult the people of Chichester on their views, and if these views were in favour, to proceed with implementing ‘20s plenty for Chichester’.

We, the people of Chichester and the surrounding parishes, can now be instrumental in reducing the speed limits in Chichester to 20mph.

We have the opportunity to make our roads safe for children, pedestrians, cyclists and car drivers for half the cost of one serious accident.

We hope we can start to make people question their use of the car as the default mode of transport.

Once the streets feel safer, we can urge more children to cycle to school, more people to make short trips by bike and on foot. We can then reduce the pollution on the streets, and we may even find that we become healthier, fitter and happier.

Our opponents argue that the police will not enforce the new speed limit.

But I know that other police forces up and down the country are embracing the scheme and enforcing 20mph limits.

Why can’t this happen here?

Light-touch enforcement and education are key and have both been achieved by ‘can-do’ authorities.

The forthcoming public consultation about 20’s Plenty for Chichester will offer us all the opportunity to put other people first.

A slightly slower journey could avoid a collision, save an elderly person from injury, and give a mother the confidence to allow her child to cycle to school.

A 20mph limit will make Chichester a safer, healthier place to be.

Sarah Sharp

Campaign Co-ordinator, 20’s Plenty for Chichester