Taxi service to get across Stockbridge after Sammy Transport closes down

ks180254-1 Chi Stockbridge Lights  phot kate'Signs at the Stockbridge crossing.ks180254-1 SUS-180529-212136008
ks180254-1 Chi Stockbridge Lights phot kate'Signs at the Stockbridge crossing.ks180254-1 SUS-180529-212136008

Highways England has agreed to provide a taxi service across the A27 at Stockbridge while footbridge works continue.

It follows an announcement by community charity Sammy Transport that it would be closing down after 47 years.

News of Sammy Transport’s liquidation came just a few days after Highways England and AOne+ agreed to pay for those crossing the roundabout using the community service.

Approached by the Observer as to alternative arrangments, a Highways England spokesman said: “We have agreed with Starline to provide a taxi service for mobility restricted users needing to cross the A27 at Stockbridge, including those with scooters.

“This service has to be pre-booked, and will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

Today (August 6) marks four months to the day since the replacement footbridge at Stockbridge roundabout was due to reopen.

During months of delays, due to a ‘movement’ problem, pedestrians have been diverted via the canal on a route that was revised to be made shorter at the start of July.

A Highways England spokesman said a shuttle bus service was initially provided as alternative disabled transport but this was ‘not well-used’ and stopped when the diversion was made shorter.

It then came under pressure from Donnington Parish Council, which approached Highways England and AOne+ with concerns from residents with mobility scooters who ‘found the slope of the temporary path difficult or impossible to navigate’.

CCTV, extra lighting and patrols were put in place for the pedestrian diversion, although some CCTV cameras were stolen shortly after being installed.

Up to six months of overnight road closures and speed restrictions are set to start from as early as this Friday (August 10) in a renewed bid to finally reopen the bridge.