‘Excessive’ plans to impose a 20 miles per hour (mph) speed limit along the full length of Farnham Road look set to be ditched from a major overhaul of the main road in the west of Slough.

Leaders of Slough Borough Council approved the regeneration scheme at a meeting on Monday, May 20. But council leader Dexter Smith said he thought initial proposals for a 20mph speed limit should only cover areas where there will be ‘echelon’ parking on the roadside.

Councillor Smith said: “I feel that that is only necessary in the area where the echelon bays parking is. To extend it beyond that is excessive in my opinion.”

Slough Borough Council wants to ‘revitalise’ the main A355 road that runs from Bath Road to the Slough Trading Estate. The plans aim to prioritise walking and cycling and give more priority to buses. They also want to give more space for outside dining at small shops and cafes.

Designs shown to Slough Borough’s cabinet – its leading group of councillors – this week suggested that plans to impose a 20mph zone would stay.

But councillor Smith said he wanted the lower speed limit only between Essex Avenue and  Sheffield Road. This is where ‘echelon parking bays’ will be placed at 45 degree angles to the road, meaning cars will have to reverse out.

Councillor Smith said: “The echelon parking requires people to reverse into spaces at an angle and the thought of doing that with people whizzing past you at 30mph is quite daunting.”

Sabia Akram and Waqas Sabah – the councillors for Farnham – also asked for changes to the plans. They wanted make sure that new street furniture such as benches and planters wouldn’t prove to be an obstacle for disabled people.

And they asked for traffic measures to be considered for side streets such as Hampshire Avenue, Gloucester Avenue, and Essex Avenue to prevent them becoming congested.

Councillor Akram said: “The amount of street furniture – whether that’s our own transport infrastructure or whether that’s planters and other things – try to look aesthetically pleasing but can actually cause an obstruction."

She asked for designers to ‘look just beyond Farnham Road to ensure that people aren’t using it as a rat run, people are able to park considerably'.

The cabinet approved the plans but also agreed that the council director in charge, Patrick Hayes, be given permission to make changes relating to the Farnham councillors’ comments and the 20mph limit.

Savio DeCruz, the officer who led the design, also said that traffic measures on side roads would be ‘dealt with separately, not as part of this scheme'.

Councillor Smith said he hopes the revamp will be completed by July next year. And councillor Paul Kelly – who is responsible for planning – called the scheme a once in a generation opportunity to make positive change to support our businesses and communities'.