United Kingdom

Resident, 73, ‘fed up’ of living in ‘bus desert’

Linda Berry, of Kellett Road, told the Echo she’s ‘fed up’ with no bus service being available where she lives in Shirley.

Southampton City Council has announced it’s due to receive £1.2m from the Department of Transport to boost the frequency of buses to Shirley, Lordshill, Thornhill, and Harefield.

But as it stands, 73-year-old Linda says Hill Lane hasn’t had a regular bus service for 15 years.

Linda said: “I’m so fed up with no transport in the area.

“If you look at a map of Hill Lane, looking north at King Edward’s School and then Kellett Road, you’ll see that we don’t have a bus route.

“In the last 15 years we haven’t had a regular bus come along Hill Lane, we’ve just come to terms with the fact that we have no bus, it’s a bus desert!”

Daily Echo:

In order to get the bus, Linda must either walk to Shirley Road or drive to the Cowherds entrance of Southampton Common.

“I think it’s wrong of me to have to park somewhere else to get the bus,” she said.

“We’re supposed to be saving the planet, not driving on small journeys and polluting the atmosphere.”

READ MORE: Southampton Bluestar passengers ‘frustrated’ over delays

Following the announcement that the council would receive additional funding from the Department of Transport to improve the bus network in the city, Richard Tyldsley, Bluestar general manager, said: “Together with Southampton City Council, our team has worked hard to secure government funding support.

Daily Echo:

“This will help to make sustainable travel an even more attractive option across the city.”

He added: “We strongly believe buses are the perfect solution for reducing congestion and improving air quality in the area and the Bus Service Improvement Plan will play a significant role in achieving this.”

Funding from the government could also be used to launch a new route connecting the city centre with the Outdoor Sports Centre, Lordshill and University Hospital Southampton via Hill Lane.

Angela Berry, CEO of Lighthouse Learning Trust, which includes a sixth form college on Hill Lane, said: “This new service will provide more opportunities for students to study in Southampton with an easier, more environmentally friendly journey.

“It will also support the communities we serve to access training and all that the vibrant city of Southampton has to offer.”

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