A MOUNTAIN pass popular with motorcyclists could have its speed limit reduced to 40mph, prompting concerns from local business.

Denbighshire County Council plans to make the current 60mph A542 Horseshoe Pass near Llangollen, which reaches a maximum height of 417m (1,367ft) with a steep drop on one side, a 40mph stretch for what it says is "safety reasons".

It is a well-known tourist spot which is synonymous for being particularly popular with motorcyclists and one local business owner says he fears a loss in footfall if the move is made.

Simon Clemence, owner of the renowned Ponderosa Cafe which sits on the pass' summit, said: "We rely heavily on those (motorcyclists) sorts of customers.

"We have a lot of bikers visit the café in the summer and I think a lot of them will say ‘stuff it’ and head to another area if they have to do 40mph."

The proposal, which has been in the pipeline since 2014 with the stretch being known as a collision hotspot, is currently in the consultation phase, and former Llangollen councillor deems the proposed speed limit reduction to be unnecessary.

He said: "I put in a Freedom of Information request to North Wales Police in 2014 and it revealed that since 2009 they had only brought only one prosecution for speeding on the Horseshoe Pass and that was in the financial year 2013-14.

"If they weren’t prosecuting people for breaking the 60mph limit up there why did they want to lower it to 40mph?

"There was a noise issue from motorcycles and people were saying speeding was going on, they said that they were speeding and causing the noise and that putting in speed limits would address this. I asked our officers to put in a speed check for a week which they did. In actual fact speeding wasn’t going on with the average speed being 48 mph if I recall correctly."

A spokesperson for Denbighshire County Council said: "We are currently out to consultation on the proposed reduction of the road over the Horseshoe Pass to 40 mph. 

"This proposal is for safety reasons.  If anyone wishes to get involved in the consultation and have their say, they can do so online or in writing.

"All feedback from the consultation will be fed back and considered at a later date”.