Herefordshire is pushing ahead with plans to increase the use of 20mph zones on the county’s roads with a £100,000 investment in working up the policy.

Herefordshire Council’s official notice on a public procurement website says simply: “This tender relates to the development of a 20mph speed limit policy for Herefordshire. Herefordshire Council seeks professional consultancy services support to develop and deliver this policy document.”

When awarded, the six-month contract will run between February and August next year.

Herefordshire councillors passed a motion in 2020 to investigate “the introduction of area-wide 20mph speed limits across Herefordshire’s towns and major villages”, after a motion to restrict this to schools and accident blackspots was defeated.

The previous county administration then said in its draft masterplan for Hereford, launched in February, that “transforming Hereford’s local transport to support people-friendly streets will be underpinned by a range of modest policies and projects [including] area-wide 20mph limits”.

But there appears to be have been little progress on this since the change to a minority Conservative administration in May.

In the meantime, neighbouring Wales introduced a 20mph speed limit across most residential areas in September, in common with a growing number of English local authorities.

The campaign group 20’s Plenty For Us claims more than a third of the UK population now live in local authority areas where 20mph is the norm.

But informal polling shows the idea remains highly divisive in Herefordshire.