BRIDPORT town centre will become a 20mph zone this spring following a proposal backed by the town council.

South Street, West Street and East Street are among the roads which will become 20mph as part of the proposals.

Dorset Council says Bridport is one of five communities to have the speed limit reduced, alongside Langton Matravers, Wimborne, Pimperne and Winfrith.

Residents gave their comments, support, or objections to the applications through a process called a Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) consultation.

READ MORE: 'Strong support' for 20mph limit across town centre

Installation of the new signs will begin in April.

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: The areas in blue mark the new 20mph zone in BridportThe areas in blue mark the new 20mph zone in Bridport (Image: Dorset Council)

Cllr Dave Bolwell, Mayor of Bridport, welcomed the introduction of the new speed limits

He said: "It is something that the town council has been united on, going for 20mph in the town centre.

"It will encourage pedestrians to get out and walk or cycle.

"I think it is a visual deterrent that will make people aware to be more cautious on the roads.

"We want to make our town centre a safer place to be.

"We have made one small step but there is plenty of work to do

Will Austin, Town Clerk at Bridport Town Council said: "We will be carrying out an awareness campaign soon, to let people know about the change, which we expect to be in place by June of this year.

"This is part of a long-term Town Council commitment to implement 20mph across the whole of Bridport, wherever people live, work, play or learn.

"Last year, when on holiday in Oxfordshire where there are already many 20mph zones, the difference between travelling at 20mph and 30mph really struck me.

"At 20, I felt confident of stopping almost immediately.  At 30, the stopping time seemed much longer and more dangerous, especially in built-up areas.

“Try it yourself - when you are driving, imagine a child walked out in front of you from behind a parked car, and see how quickly you think you could stop.  

"Do that at 20mph and then at 30mph, and see if you share my feeling that you’d be more likely to avoid hitting a pedestrian at 20mph.  Yes, the lower speed can feel slow and mildly inconvenient, but I’d encourage people to consider the major benefits to road safety in Bridport."

Cllr Ray Bryan, Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Highways, Travel and Environment, said: “We offer advice and support to local towns and parishes seeking to improve and promote road safety, whether through 20mph limits and zones, or other suitable approaches.

“This initiative is in response to community concerns about road safety and healthy areas in towns and villages. It seeks to ensure that 20mph schemes give the maximum benefit for the affected communities within urban areas and village streets that are primarily residential, to ensure greater safety for pedestrians and cyclists and those using a mobility scooter, wheelchair, or similar mobility aid.”