When news happens, text SDE and your photos or videos to 80360. Or contact us by email and phone.
New evening bus services in Winchester a 'dog's dinner', forum hears
A ROW erupted between city councillors over new bus routes, with one member describing the plans as a “dog’s dinner”.
Winchester Town Forum met on Wednesday (September 12) to discuss extra services linking Badger Farm, Stanmore, Weeke and Harestock with the city centre.
But some members were unhappy that more areas were not included.
Cllr Janet Berry, Labour members for St John and All Saints, said: “Winnall and Highcliffe have been excluded from the proposals when they are high priorities in the community action plan.”
Cllr Ian Tait, Conservative, would not support the proposals, saying: “This is a dog’s dinner. I won’t support a selective route going up to Oliver’s Battery and Badger Farm. It’s a selective service not meeting the needs of the community.”
However, the forum voted to recommend that Hampshire County Council enter into a contract with Stagecoach, which will come at a cost of around £13,000 over two years.
Cllr Dominic Hiscock, Liberal Democrat, said: “If we could do it everywhere, we would, but we can’t. We have got to trial it somewhere.”
Other members expressed concern that the city was meeting costs that should be met by other parties.
Cllr Jamie Scott, Conservative member for St Luke that covers Stanmore, said: “Who is the provider of bus services? I say it’s the county council, not the city.”
Council officers hope to have the three evening services in operation by Thursday, September 20.
Forum chairman Brian Collin, Lib Dem, concluded that members would meet to review the services after one year, rather than after two years as previously suggested.