Council Issues Fines for Lorries Flouting Local Weight Restrictions

Last Friday, Highway Officers and Trading Standard Officers from Central Bedfordshire Council teamed up with the police to enforce the new heavy goods vehicle (HGV) restrictions in Dunstable. The teams set up an enforcement operation at High Street South, Church Street before finishing the day at Woburn Road in Hockliffe.

It’s the first time the council has run this type of operation since the final road signage about the restrictions was installed in January 2018, and they had plenty of success. In just one day they issued 24 Fixed Penalty Notices for contravention of the weight restriction, as well as 13 verbal warnings to HGV drivers.

"Following A Sat Nav Isn't Good Enough" - Says Councillor

Cllr Nigel Young, Executive Member for Regeneration and a Ward Member for Dunstable said: “Friday was a very productive day and demonstrates that we take the weight limit very seriously. We are aware that local people have been frustrated that there are still HGVs in the town centre.

"During the enforcement exercise, it became clear that a number of HGV drivers were following directions via their SATNAV, rather than paying attention to the road signage. This isn’t good enough. Before the weight limits came into effect, we met with the major businesses and haulage and logistics companies in the area so that their drivers were informed of the new rules.

“We expect to see better levels of compliance with the weight limits in the future, now that drivers and businesses know we are actively enforcing these. We will continue to work with the police to prosecute HGV drivers who ignore these weight limit restrictions.”

Last year the council opened its £40m Woodside Link road to take traffic from Sundon Road to Woodside Industrial Estate and on to the M1 motorway.  The council also helped fund the Highways England A5-M1 Link, which opened soon after. The previous A5 road (now A505) through Dunstable was then ‘de-trunked’, with a 7.5-tonne weight limit put in place to take HGVs away from Houghton Regis and Dunstable town centres. This was to help ease local congestion and improve air quality for residents.

A 7.5-tonne weight limit now operates in Houghton Regis, Dunstable, Toddington, Chalton and many local roads. Only heavy goods vehicles delivering to the local area can pass through these towns. However, the A505 remains the official diversion route if the M1 is completely closed.

For more information about the Woodside Link road and the area’s HGV routes, visit

*A Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) could lead to a court process if the fine is not paid within the given period.