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20mph borough speed limit

A borough-wide 20mph speed limit came into effect in September 2016. 

Why have a 20mph borough-wide speed limit?

  • Slower speeds are safer for all road users.
  • Speed limits of 20mph encourage more considerate driving. This means safer streets for cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians.
  • Lower speeds reduce the risk and severity of road collisions for drivers and their passengers. 
  • People feel more confident about being on their local streets. More children walk to school and older people feel more able to travel independently and safely.       

Are all roads in Lewisham included?

No. The 20mph speed limit does not apply to roads managed by Transport for London (red routes).

Roads where the 20mph limit does not apply include:

  • the South Circular (A205)

  • New Cross Road (A202)

  • Bromley Road leading to Lewisham High Street (A21)

  • Lewisham Way leading to Lee High Road (A20).

Private roads or those on housing estates are also not included in the borough-wide limit.   

How will I know I am in a 20mph zone?

  • At the entrance to all borough roads 20mph signs are in place.

  • On roads that border red routes there are clear signs showing the speed limit change.

  • There are smaller '20' repeater signs at regular intervals on either side of the road.

  • There may also be 20mph flashing vehicle activated signs to remind you to keep to the new lower speed limit on certain roads if required. 

How is it enforced?

The police are responsible for enforcing speed limits. They have said they will treat the 20mph in the same way as any other speed limit.

To help people manage their speed, we will:

  • introduce engineering schemes, visible interventions and landscaping standards that raise the driver's awareness of their environment

  • work on providing good education, driver information, training and publicity about speed limits

Does the 20mph speed limit apply to cyclists? 

No. However, people on bikes should ride safely, especially in shared areas.

A cyclist can be prosecuted for riding with undue care. 

Help tackle speeding in your local area

We are working with Transport for London (TfL) and the police on Community Roadwatch. It’s a road safety initiative where the police and our road safety team train and support members of the community to monitor speeding in their area using speed guns.

Drivers going over the speed limit will receive a letter from the police letting them know they were speeding, and reminding them of the speed limit in that area and why it matters. Community Roadwatch is about education, not enforcement, so these notices from the police aren’t the same as speeding tickets.

However, if a driver repeatedly speeds in one area then Community Roadwatch can request support from the police. Drivers who speed more than once in the area may have their registration number added to the Automatic Number Plate Reader (ANPR) computer. The ANPR scans number plates and checks them against those stored on the database. If a vehicle that has been caught speeding by Community Roadwatch and added to the ANPR is then picked up by an ANPR camera speeding somewhere else, police will know that the driver is a repeat offender.

Roadwatch volunteers will get training and support from neighbourhood policing team (NPT) staff.

You can find more info on Community Roadwatch on the TFL website.