Speed limit to be reduced on stretch of A50 after campaign by Bradgate Hill residents
Work is set to start next month on a speed-reduction scheme on a notorious stretch of the A50.
Leicestershire County Council is reducing the speed limit from 50mph to 40mph along a stretch of the dual carriageway between Groby and Glenfield.
It follows a campaign by residents living in Bradgate Hill, Groby over safety fears and traffic speeds.
The scheme, agreed by councillors last September, includes the closure of nine turning points in the central reservation along Markfield Road.
Kevin Edwards, of the county highways department said work on closing these gaps will start on April 8.
He said: “We will be carrying out works to Bradgate Hill and Markfield Road, Groby, which includes closing off nine gaps in the central reservation and reducing the speed restriction to 40mph.
“It will be carried out under a 24-hour offside inbound and outbound lane closure from 7.30am on Saturday, April 8, until 5.30pm on Sunday April 9.”
The offside lanes of both city-bound and county-bound carriageways will also close during the “off-peak” hours of 9.30am to 3.30pm from Monday, April 10.
The lane closures will be in operation on the section of the A50 between the Field Head roundabout and the junction for the A46.
A 40mph speed restriction will be introduced for safety.
Mr Edwards said: “Access will not be possible during the works through any of the gaps.
“We will endeavour to keep inconvenience to a minimum and maintain access to properties at all times.”
An overwhelming majority of residents supported the safety improvements during a public consultation held last summer.
Councillor Ozzy O’Shea, county council member for Groby and Ratby and a former police traffic officer, played a key part in the campaign, which was also supported by Charnwood MP Edward Agar and Hinckley and Bosworth MP David Tredinnick.
When the scheme was approved last year he told the Mercury: “I have been campaigning with residents to get the speed limit in Bradgate Hill reduced to 40mph since I was first elected in 2013.
“Residents have been asking for the speed reduction for many years.
“They have difficulty exiting their drives and turning into their drives due to the speed of traffic.
“There have also been several fatal accidents on this stretch of road over many years.”
Cabinet transport spokesman Councillor Peter Osbourne said: “The overwhelming amount of residents do have the safety concern.
“These measures will allow it to be a much safer route out of Leicester to the M1.”
Campaigners’ only gripe is that the new speed 40mph limit will not be backed up with speed cameras.
Leicestershire Police have also said they can not back the plan because the lack of cameras meant they would not be able to enforce it.
A police spokesman said: “Should a 40mph limit be introduced and high levels of non-compliance become an issue, Leicestershire Police will request the county council introduce other measures on Bradgate Hill to gain better compliance.”