RESIDENTS who have been relentlessly campaigning for a lower speed limit through their rural village have been thrust to the forefront of a national initiative - after a motorist was clocked driving at almost double the limit past a school.

The Millhouse Green protest has been chosen by national speed charity Brake as an awareness campaign for this year’s ‘Road Safety Week’ as a result of their dogged fight for action, particularly near the village’s school on the A628.

Campaigners have been working to get the 40mph limit reduced - now their ‘30 For A Reason’ scheme has been picked to spotlight Brake’s campaign across the UK.

The school has been flagged up as the only one in the area with a 40mph limit going past it and a traffic survey revealed drivers have gone as fast as 76mph along the stretch of road.
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Leading campaigner George Reid said: “Every year Brake chooses a different safety theme to focus on and for this year it is ‘No Need To Speed’.

“This is Brake’s biggest awareness-raising event and they say they are committed to educating on the dangers of speeding and helping save lives from being lost on our roads.”

Road Safety Week - which ended on Sunday - aimed to inspire thousands of schools, organisations and communities to take action on road safety.

“Millhouse Green suffers from a speeding problem,” said George. “A 40mph A-road runs through the village, which frequently sees heavy lorries and local boy racers travel dangerously fast on it.

“This is particularly dangerous because the road also connects to a primary school, putting children crossing the road at real risk of being involved in a crash.

“This makes it the only 40mph single-lane road outside primary school gates in the Barnsley borough.

“We are determined to get the speed limit on the road changed to 30mph, as we hope this will prevent tragic deaths and serious injuries of schoolchildren.”

The 30 For A Reason campaign has been backed by Penistone Town Council and hundreds of residents in Millhouse Green nearby.

At the moment, they are waiting to see details of a £1.4m Barnsley Council-led safety scheme along the A628 before deciding on further action.

Joshua Harris, director of campaigns for Brake, added: “There is no excuse for breaking the speed limit and latest figures highlight the grossly excessive speeds of some drivers who show complete disregard for the law and people’s safety.

“None of us should be put in danger by the high-risk behaviour of others when we’re getting about on roads, and that’s why we are asking everyone to join us in our call that there is no need to speed.

“Many drivers drift over limits by mistake, but our research shows that a shockingly large number of drivers, particularly men, break speed limits excessively. We want all drivers to remember the daily disasters that are due to speed, think about the victims, slow down, and reduce road danger.

“It’s important to remember that sometimes driving under the speed limit can still be too fast, particularly on windy roads, roads with poor visibility, and roads where there could be people about on bicycles and on foot.

“The voices of the bereaved and injured help us all to understand that getting somewhere a few minutes earlier is never worth the risk.”