Halesworth’s bus hub bid gets cabinet backing

Councillor Stephen Ardley.

Councillor Stephen Ardley. - Credit: Archant

After years of debate, Halesworth is set to get a new bus hub – despite a large amount of opposition.

Waveney District Council’s cabinet has agreed to support a project to use part of its Angel Link North car park to create the hub and says there are “overriding good reasons” for backing the idea.

However, a survey carried out during a consultation event found that 43pc of people who attended were against the idea with the main worry being the loss of town centre car parking and the loss of bus stops in Saxons Way, regarded by Halesworth Town Council in the past as a “danger spot”.

People in favour of the new bus hub – 28pc were for and 29pc expressed no preference – felt it would be a safer place to wait for buses and that the Saxons Way stops caused congestion and were a hazard for traffic and pedestrians.

Use of the Angel Link North car park for the hub would mean the loss of 30 car park spaces. Car park usage is between 18pc and 25pc and the management of the site says losing 40pc of the spaces would not have any adverse financial implications.

The cabinet’s decision will also hinge on the future of a leased long-stay parking area next to the Thoroughfare set for a supermarket.

In a report Stephen Ardley, cabinet member for operational partnerships, said: “Suffolk County Council as the highways authority needs to consider whether the level of risk that the current arrangements present is unacceptable.

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“It is understood that the results of the consultation will now be taken into consideration, and the concerns raised will be examined to see if they can be mitigated. The outcome of this will be considered alongside other factors including the responses from the police, commercial/retail sector, Waveney District Council, bus operators, ESTA and the Tourism Group.”

What do you think about the bus hub plans? Write, giving your full contact details, to Letters, Beccles and Bungay Journal, 20 Blyburgate, Beccles, NR34 9TB or email bbj.letters@archant.co.uk