Safe | 20mph

The Highland Cycle Campaign believes that speeds of 20mph on roads where people live, play, and work, are safer for cyclists and can promote more cycling.  We are campaigning for 20mph limits in Highland to be made permanent and supported with traffic calming and enforcement where required.

Why 20mph?

Lower speeds can reduce collisions and the harm caused when collisions occur.

Many potential cyclists are put off travelling by bike due to concerns around safety.  Increasing road safety (and the perception of safety) encourages more people to try cycling.   

20mph zones are part of a range of measures that are needed to increase active travel.

20mph in the Highlands

In 2022 The Highland Council agreed to become a trial area for the introduction of 20mph speed limits in built up areas across Scotland. 

“The Scottish government’s National Strategy for 20mph speed limits will expand 20mph speed limits across Scotland and ensure all appropriate roads in built-up areas have a safer speed limit of 20mph by 2025.”

Becoming a ‘trial area’ has the benefit of funding from Transport Scotland for the roll out (signs and lines).   Initially limits will be for a temporary period of 18 months.  The limits will then be evaluated and options considered:

“Options to be considered for each road will be:-

  • temporary 20mph speed limit is made permanent with existing signing and lining only
  • temporary 20mph limit will require additional speed management features in order to become permanent as existing mean average speeds are too high
  • temporary 20mph limit reverts back to a 30mph limit as road is not appropriate for a permanent 20mph limit.
OptionsHighland Cycle Campaign
Temporary 20mph speed limit is made permanent with existing signing and lining onlyWe support this option where speed limits of 20mph are being observed.
Temporary 20mph limit will require additional speed management features in order to become permanent as existing mean average speeds are too highWe support this option where the speed limit of 20mph is not being complied with.

Care should be taken that traffic management does not adversely impact cyclists
Temporary 20mph limit reverts back to a 30mph limit as road is not appropriate for a permanent 20mph limit.Roads in areas that people live, work and play with speed limits of greater than 20mph should have separate provision for cyclists. For example a protected cycle lane.

Take Action

  1. Respond to the Highland Councils Initial Consultation on 20mph by the 31st January 2024
  2. Contact your local Councillors to let them know you support 20mph in built up areas because its safer for cyclists.
  3. Join the campaign team (contact us)