Having launched their speed-reduction campaign over two years ago, the residents of Rhyd y Sarn are wondering what, if anything, Gwynedd Council is doing about a blackspot where crashes are a regular occurrence.

The Cambrian News has followed the campaign of the Rhyd y Sarn residents from the start and, earlier this year, it looked like progress was being made when the council launched a public consultation proposing a reduction of the present 60mph speed limit down to 40mph.

But the residents are still being plagued by crashes in the village as the speed limit remains at 60mph, and they feel 40mph would still be too fast for the road.

Peter Jones is the campaign coordinator for the residents of Rhyd y Sarn.

He said: “The council’s traffic and project manager, Iwan ap Trefor, sent me an email on the 16th December 2022, saying ‘We are confident that a change in the speed limit will be in place by July 2023’ and it’s now nearly October and we haven’t heard anything since.

“Even if they reduce it to 40mph, that still means pedestrians are walking in the road itself, there being no pavements, with vehicles travelling dangerously fast and close by.

“And the crashes continue to mount. When the council’s not repairing a parapet wall after yet another accident impact, they’re having to make good the village sign, trashed again last week after another crash.”

He added: “Just a few weeks ago a collision took place here resulting in significant damage to the two vehicles involved (see photos).

“The problem is speed and this will not be resolved until the council take seriously realistic steps to protect people. After all, as a statutory body they have a duty of care to their residents and they’re failing to meet our human rights in this respect.”

Commenting on the introduction of the 20mph speed limit elsewhere, Peter said: “There’s a tragic contradiction going on in Gwynedd. They’re reducing 30mph to 20mph in places where there are pavements to protect pedestrians. Meanwhile, we’re walking in a road where vehicles are still passing within inches at 60mph, and the Council thinks 40mph will prove safer! One couldn’t make it up.

“I can remember when Gwynedd Council’s slogan was ‘People First’. I guess ‘Vehicles First’ would be more appropriate nowadays.”

A Gwynedd Council spokesperson said: “The number of collisions on this section of road is clearly a concern that Cyngor Gwynedd shares with local residents in Rhyd y Sarn.

“The council is now in the process of erecting chevron signs on the approach to the hamlet from Blaenau Ffestiniog, which we hope will have a significant impact on the way motorists negotiate this section of road.

“The speed limit through Rhyd y Sarn has been reviewed and the legal process to reduce the speed limit has been completed. The work of putting up new signs is due to be carried out over the next two months.

“We hope the steps being taken will help to improve road safety on this section of road and appreciate the desire locally for improvements to be introduced as soon as possible.”