RESIDENTS were perceptive to a new policy idea that will make roads in a town safer as the initiative was put forward at the latest council meeting.

Manningtree Town Council invited residents to discuss making the entire town a 20mph zone, reducing the current limit of 30mph.

Interest in the topic was high, with more than 40 residents turning up - a good showing for one of England's smallest towns.

Manningtree councillor Alec Marsh spoke about the necessity of making the town a ’20 is plenty’ zone.

He said: “Councillor Ben Brown and I are part of the working group looking into this and we feel it is really important to keep our residents safe.

“Along with members of the 20 is Plenty for Us group we are putting forward the idea to Essex County Council.

“We are at the start of the process but hopefully it will bear fruit.”

The policy is gaining traction around Essex, as Rowhedge has recently been successful in getting a 20mph speed limit adopted in his town.

Additionally, Colchester Council are now requiring 20 miles per hour limits on newl-built residential roads.

One of the main reasons that Mr Marsh would like Manningtree to become a 20 is plenty zone is its narrow roads.

He added: “I have two young children aged three and six and the pavements are not very wide, it could be dangerous.

“We have lots of new businesses and with our beach and toy library lots of families will be going up and down the main road.

“Its just about people driving more slowly to be honest, most people already do that because of common sense but there’s enough people that don’t.”

A spokesperson for Essex Highways said: “Reducing the speed limit to 20mph on residential and town centre roads is designed to make our streets safer for pedestrians and cyclists and supports the aims of our Safer, Greener, Healthier campaign.

“A reduction in the speed limit in turn helps encourage residents to use more active forms of travel and benefits towns like Manningtree as it helps reduce congestion.

“The best way to take any highways matter forward is to speak to your local Essex County Councillor who can raise the issue at the next Local Highways Panel. Any traffic management or signage issues raised at the Local Highways Panel can then be investigated.”