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New default 20mph speed limit to come into effect across Wales

20mph speed limit

Residents are reminded that the Welsh Government default 20mph speed limit for Wales starts on September 17. Here, we’ve included links to useful information from Welsh Government about what to expect from Sunday. 

The default 20mph speed limit will come into effect across all Local Authorities in Wales, and will result in most of the current 30mph roads being reduced to 20mph to improve road safety. Welsh Government has emphasised this is not a blanket change for all roads – rather, as a general rule, it will apply where street lighting is in place, unless signs are indicating a different speed limit.

Welsh Government has provided a bank of information to help communities know what to expect locally from the start date of Sunday, September 17. Please find some useful links to the Welsh Government content below:

Each Local Authority was asked to identify local exemptions to the default 20mph speed limit, to retain a 30mph limit from September 17 as they do not meet the specified placemaking criteria set by Welsh Government. More than 70 exempt roads were identified in Rhondda Cynon Taf (by June 2023), and they are available to view on the data map on Welsh Government’s website.

In July 2023, the public notice was published on these proposed exemptions, giving the public an opportunity to raise any objections. The second element of the public notice (Notice of Making) was published on September 11, and the Council will write to residents who made a submission with a response.

In February 2023, the Council began advanced works to prepare its highway network for the changes, with all costs being met by Welsh Government. This includes removing speed limit road markings, with minor resurfacing needed at some locations. This has been completed throughout the Cynon Valley, while work in the Rhondda and Taff areas will be completed by September 17.

Additional work to install red surface treatments will be completed after September 17 at locations where new gateways are introduced under the new default speed limit. Disruptive work will be publicised locally in due course.

All regulatory signage changes across the County Borough are on course to be completed by Monday, September 17. Secondary signage works that are not legally-required (for example, the implementation or removal of the 20mph and 30mph repeater signs) will be completed by November 2023.

The Council’s project homepage ( continues to be updated, while queries from residents about any aspect of the default 20mph speed limit can be sent to for the attention of officers.

Posted on 13/09/2023