The Prime Minister’s review of controversial low traffic neighbourhoods has been slammed by the man in charge of transport in Hackney.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told the Sunday Telegraph he wanted the Department of Transport to look into the LTNs because of concerns that they can lead to congestion in other areas.

He claimed he wanted to leave the climate in a better state, but "not necessarily add cost or hassle to people’s lives".

Cllr Mete Coban, who is responsible for climate change, environment and transport at Hackney Council, said the Government has no power over LTNs, which are put in by local councils and authorities such as Transport for London, which runs major roads.

The Labour councillor said: “You would think the Prime Minister has enough on his plate with the cost of living crisis, the NHS flat out on its face, and our planet burning.

“Instead, he is potentially fuelling culture wars and could be accused of being disingenuous with the public about powers he does not have.

Hackney Gazette: Mete Coban,  Hackney Cabinet member for environment, climate change & transport, (Labour, Stoke Newington)  pic Julia Gregory, free for use by partners of BBC news wire service

“We have extensively consulted with over 20,000 people over our LTN schemes, including a local election in May 2022, where the public decisively backed LTN-supporting candidates."

Hackney has introduced 19 LTNs since 2020, covering 50 per cent of its road network and 70 per cent of eligible roads – more than any other London borough. The council said most people getting fines for breaching LTNs do not live in Hackney, where there is low car ownership.

Independent candidates who have campaigned against LTNs stood in the local elections. Hackney Conservatives also oppose the policy, which they say is not working.

Campaigners in Hackney unsuccessfully challenged the council’s LTNs in court, arguing they had “paralysed” roads.

They said: “Quiet residential, and even school streets have become gridlocked, sometimes for hours at a time. The hum of stationary engines, the smell of fumes and blaring car horns of frustrated drivers have become all too familiar in many neighbourhoods.”

Cllr Coban added:  “Our direction is clear, as set out in our low traffic plan earlier this year, and we intend to deliver cleaner air for the people of Hackney.”