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Speeding motorists using Beal Bank cause concerns

Beal Bank heading into Warkworth. Picture by Jane Coltman
Beal Bank heading into Warkworth. Picture by Jane Coltman

Concerns have been raised about speeding motorists along a stretch in Warkworth, with a police survey showing some drivers have exceeded 61mph in the 30mph zone.

The situation at Beal Bank came under scrutiny at Warkworth Parish Council last week, with Amble PC Dougie Donaldson in attendance.

The road has a 30mph limit, stretching to just outside of the village, before motorists can drive at 60mph along Rotary Way, between Warkworth and Amble.

A five-day survey was conducted at Beal Bank in July showing that speeding is a fairly frequent occurrence, with some motorists going more than double the 30mph limit. Police have also recently carried out a Speed Watch session, which clocked a number of drivers going too fast.

Chairman Coun Jeff Watson: “There is evidence that there is real excessive speed here and this is something that people have been concerned about for a long time. We often see a camera van at Amble industrial estate, but that is virtually redundant now, because people can’t speed now that the new roundabout has been built. How about getting the Safety Partnership to move it from there to the bottom of Beal Bank? If it became known that there was a camera van there, it would have the desired effect.”

Coun John Hobrough said he had been overtaken twice in the 30mph zone down Beal Bank and Coun Sally Black added: “A lot of motorists get quite irate if you do 30mph right up to the 30mph sign.”

PC Donaldson said: “I will take back your concerns and see if the van can be used at Beal Bank. The cameras are normally deployed at hotspots – areas where there has been accidents in the past and these accidents have resulted in serious injury or a fatality.

“We have responded to concerns at Beal Bank by putting out the Community Speed Watch. The last one clocked 126 cars coming up the bank from Amble in an hour. We stopped five of these for excessive speed – three of which were registered in Warkworth. We will be looking to carry out more checks.”

Coun John Lilley said the only way to solve the matter would be to install traffic-calming measures where the 30mph sign is, while Coun Watson suggested reducing the speed limit along Rotary Way.

After the meeting, Alnwick inspector Paul Truscott said discussions are ongoing to look at long-term solutions, such as signage and road markings, and said people can attend the LMAPs meeting, set to be on April 27 at Lion House, Alnwick, to raise concerns.