BRADFORD Council is to consider cutting the speed limit on the vast majority of the roads in Bradford city centre.

If it goes ahead, apart froma few exceptions a blanket 20mph zone will cover all the city centre within the inner ring road, plus key streets near Bradford College and the university campus.

Similar speed restrictions could be introduced outside many of the city's schools.

Council officials say the changes will protect vulnerable road users, including children, pedestrians and cyclists, by reducing average speeds.

But will a blanket speed reduction work, especially when so many drivers already blatantly flout the current 30mph limit?

West Yorkshire Police's roads policing unit is already overstretched. Simply slashing the speed limit by a third, putting up some new signs and relying on enforcement to ensure strict compliance is surely not the answer.

It didn't work when Bradford introduced Britain's first car-sharing motorway lane between the M606 and the M62 and it won't work with a 20mph zone.

A speed limit reduction in conjunction with traffic calming measures would be more effective - but filling the city centre with speed humps and artificial pinch points will just create further congestion.

Only last year Manchester said that it was halting a 20mph roll-out after finding it made almost no difference to average speeds or accidents. On some residential steets the average speed actually went up.

We think a targeted approach would be more effective - money spent on fewer, but better, schemes would have a meaningful effect on improving residential areas and the quality of life for residents.