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Traffic enforcement set to start next month following positive survey response

Parking, roads and transport

31 January 2024

Victoria Gardens and St John's Street junctionThe junction of Victoria Gardens and St John's Street

Motorists are encouraged to pay attention to the rules of the road as traffic enforcement starts in several areas where some are ignoring or unaware of the restrictions in place.

New regulations came into effect in May 2022 through the Traffic Management Act (2004) and the Department for Transport (DfT) has changed legislation to enable local authorities to apply for powers to enforce against moving traffic contraventions.

The Government approved plans for West Northamptonshire Council to take on this responsibility, following a positive response to a public consultation around five proposed sites, three of which will be coming forward for enforcement in February.

Many of these are intended to aid traffic flow by ensuring carriageways don’t become blocked by vehicles, and to help avoid accidents taking place at busy junctions.

These powers have until now only been used by police but a recent change in the law makes it possible for councils to tackle those breaching regulations.

With our highways partner Kier and the police, we identified the first five spots which would benefit from this kind of enforcement.

The majority of survey responses came from those who either strongly support or support the introduction of these measures, although some of those who responded to the survey disagreed, but their objections were largely around the introduction of enforcement as a concept.

As long as people are aware of and are following the rules of the road, they won’t fall foul of these new measures, and we should see fewer accidents and hopefully less congestion as a result.
Cllr Phil Larratt, Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport, Highways and Waste

Cameras will be installed in five locations, the first three of which will be:

Vehicles regularly block the hatched yellow box at the junction of St John’s Street and Victoria Gardens – anyone driving into a box junction must have means to exit it without stopping. Enforcement will start there on Thursday 1 February.

Right turns are not allowed from Fishponds Road into Great Billing Way and enforcement will start there around mid-February.

Hermitage Way is a bus only route which is routinely used by other motorists and enforcement is also set to start there later in February.

During the first six months of operation at each site a warning notice will be issued for first offences for any given vehicle, thereafter Penalty Charge Notices will be issued.

Two further locations already agreed are set to be added at a later stage:

Entry into the specified stretch of Deanshanger Road is prohibited except for buses. At the Horse Market junction with Gold St and Marefair, several right and left turns are banned, and drivers should also ensure they follow the blue directional arrow signs. Motorists should avoid stopping in the box junction at the eastern end of Gold Street.

Further sites for enforcement are under consideration, especially those that residents suggested during the consultation process.

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