THE speed limit outside a primary school's gates is to be increased - after residents complained about noisy traffic- calming measures.

The headteacher of Lakes Primary School, Christopher Evans, has criticised a council decision to remove a series of speed humps that will mean the end of the current 20mph speed limit.

Governors have spent almost 20 years battling to cut speeds outside the school, in Redcar, east Cleveland, and Mr Evans said he is "exasperated" by the decision - which will see the speed limit rise to 30mph.

Work will begin soon to dig up the speed humps and replace them with a user-friendly version, after residents complained about noise and vibrations.

But removing the humps means the 20mph speed limit will be scrapped, as 20mph zones must be accompanied by physical traffic calming measures.

The planned humps - known as H Humps - are shallower and cause less driver discomfort.

But they are not regarded as physical calming measures so the speed limit in West Dyke Road, which runs past the school, will return to 30mph.

Mr Evans said: "The governing body has had a campaign for the best part of two decades to calm down the traffic.

"In recent years improvements have been made to alleviate the problems - but stripping out those measures is unbelievable."

Chairman of governors Vince Peel said: "I think it is unbelievable. The Government has just announced a big incentive to reduce the speed outside every school to 20mph, and here it is going back up."

He said when the limit was introduced, the average speed of motorists outside the school decreased from 37mph to 21 mph.

Eric Empson, Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council's cabinet chairman, said: "These humps are causing noise and vibration to the houses adjacent to the school - that has caused a lot of concern with the people living there. So we have come up with options to relieve this without jeopardising safety.

"The new humps are designed so that that buses and heavy goods vehicles can go up two tracks either side - they are much more user-friendly and aim to reduce noise and vibration."

"It will improve the living environment for residents but will not reduce safety for the children and will make life easier for traffic travelling on the road."

Work begins on February 20 and is expected to last three weeks.