‘I’m a car expert – the 20mph speed limit in Wales is going to destroy tourism’

A motoring expert has warned that the introduction of lower speed limits in Wales could lead to a decline in tourism.

Shahzad Sheikh, better known as Brown Car Guy, is an automotive journalist who regularly posts videos to his YouTube channel, discussing changes to motoring law in Britian, previously campaigning against the expansion of London’s Ultra-Low Emission Zone.

In a recent video, Shahzad discusses the reduction of speed limits in residential areas of Wales, stating that it may discourage drivers from visiting the area.

He explained: “I don’t think that they realise the damage that this 20mph limit is going to do to their economy by basically slowing everybody down and frustrating everybody.

“And if you take away this road traffic from anywhere, and historically you’ve seen this if you just look back at the old Route 66 in America, it’s very obvious that what will happen is that you’re going to lose places like hotels, bed and breakfast places, pubs, restaurants, cafes, and popular attractions, it’s inevitable.”

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Whilst Shahzad agreed that it can be beneficial to impose slower speed limits in some built-up areas, such as nearby schools, he stated that the scale of the rollout was unnecessary.

The new speed limit has affected about 7,500 miles of restricted road, about 34 percent of the road network in the country.

However, First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford backed the move, stating that the move should lead to 10 fewer deaths on the country’s roads each year.

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Later in the video, Shahzad, who’s channel has nearly 25,000 subscribers, has received several messages from viewers in Wales, stating that they have experienced more traffic issues since the new speed limit came into force.

“I’ve had people commenting and sending me messages about the situation in Wales telling me how it’s been driving them crazy.

“There are traffic jams where there were never traffic jams before, some people have said it’s added an hour or an hour and a half to the actual overall commute time.”

Introduced on September 17 2023 across Wales, drivers can face fines of at least £100 and three points on their licence if they break the law.

However, the rollout of the new speed limit was controversial, with over 400,000 motorists signing a petition calling for the law to be scrapped.

Nevertheless, any further changes to the residential streets will not occur for a while, with the Senedd not expected to debate the petition until Spring 2024.

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