Bus continues to prove popular and it’s getting a facelift!

Eco-busThe latest figures are out and I’m very please to say that we’ve had more than 2,500 bus passenger journeys since the bus launch and we’re now averaging a minimum of 30 passenger journeys every day (and that’s on a quiet day!).

Having been out and about on the bus in the last few weeks I can safely say that those using the bus are glad it’s running, as everyone was positive about the service, with one gentleman describing the service as a ‘God send’.

I also got talking to Iris Lester, a local resident who has tried all three routes, and she said, “People are finding it very useful. I think it’s a very good thing for the town.”

The bus costs £1.50 for an adult single and £2.25 for an adult return and is 75p or £1.15 for a child (single or return). Older person’s bus passes are accepted.

Details of the bus route and timetable can be found on our website at: http://www.whitehillbordon.com/transport/

Next month will also see the bus spruced up with the winning design from our schools bus design competition. 

Patricia Parratt, from Bordon Junior School, and Dylan Appleby, from Weyford Junior School, won over the judges with their fantastic design and slogan, which are displayed at the Eco-station. These designs have been worked up over the summer and last week saw Patricia came into the office to put her final seal of approval onto the design.
Patricia and her design
Now it’s just a waiting game until the design is ready to go on the bus in a few weeks. I can’t wait!!

Quebec Barracks and Louisburg Barracks take steps forward

Significant progress is being made in Whitehill & Bordon with two major steps being taken towards delivering the Eco-town project.

Normally transport is the theme running through the blog but I’d be foolish not to mention some of the Eco-town’s big news from the last few weeks, so here goes…

Firstly, after its sale to the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) the development company Radian have now been announced as the developer for the Quebec Barracks site, which will see 100 new homes built.

Radian, who has won prestigious awards for its sustainable developments in recent years, was chosen after a rigorous selection process. They will be tasked with delivering the high environmental standards required to make this a showcase development on the former Ministry of Defence land – as well as making it a great place to live and work.

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The mixture of mainly two storey family houses set around a ‘village green’ will be built to the highest energy efficiency standards.

The homes in Whitehill & Bordon will be among the first in the country to use the new ‘zero carbon home standard’.

To make the homes eco they will have solar panels, home office facilities, triple glazed windows, cycle storage, water butts, composting equipment, high-levels of insulation as well as measures to reduce overheating.

Energy and water use will be monitored by ‘smart meters’ which give comprehensive information about the amount of energy being used which will help to promote savings.

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For further information on this story click this link to visit our news page on the website.

Secondly, we are very pleased to announce that £1.2m government funding has been won by East Hampshire District Council in partnership with Hampshire County Council to help kick-start the business economy and build new homes in Whitehill & Bordon.

It will be used to start transforming Louisburg Barracks into a business park with much-needed new jobs and new homes.

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There will be approximately 450 new homes and 6.13ha of employment land delivering approximately 500 new jobs.

Further details about the proposals for the Louisburg Barracks site can be found using this link to our website or by visiting the BBC website.

To be kept up to date with all the latest news from the Whitehill & Bordon project sign up for our e-newsletter on our website.

Do you know how to drive?

Last Friday (16th August) changes were made to how police deal with the offence of careless driving, such as middle lane hogging. The big question though is do drivers know how to drive?

It sounds like a silly question. If you’ve passed your test then surely you know the rules to make sure you don’t get penalty points, but that might not be the case. So lets start at the beginning.

What changed on the 16th August 2013?

Drive%202[1]As of Friday police forces across Britain were given the power to issue £100 fines and three penalty points for offences associated with careless driving. This upped the fine for things like using a phone or not wearing a seatbelt while driving and added to the powers they already possess to penalise serious driving offences with court action and the possibility of much higher fines and penalties.

What are the offences? 

According to the BBC‘s report it is expected that police will focus their new powers on the following:

  • Driving too close to the vehicle in front
  • Failing to give way at a junction (not requiring evasive action by another driver)
  • Overtaking and pushing into a queue of traffic
  • Being in the wrong lane and pushing into a queue on a roundabout
  • Lane discipline, such as needlessly hogging the middle or outside lanes
  • Inappropriate speed
  • Wheel-spins, hand-brake turns and other careless manoeuvres

What this means for drives

Most simply it means getting out the highway code and reviewing its guidance. For many of us it’s probably been a while since we last took the time to look and things have been updated.

I’m not going to repeat the whole document but here are a few reminders:

  • Driving too close to the vehicle in front (tailgating) e.g. Rule 126:

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The Highway Code stipulated a two second gap between vehicles on a dry day. Double that if it’s wet/icy. Anything less and it’s at the discretion of the police officer.

  • Failing to give way at a junction e.g. Rule 259

A polite reminder…drivers joining a road, via a slip road, do not have priority.

It is up to those joining traffic to fit into the flow. That means match your speed with existing traffic whenever possible, do not force anyone to take evasive action to avoid you and only move out of the slip road or left lane when it is safe to do so.

Should a driver on the motorway change lanes to give joining traffic room then so be it, but they don’t have to.

Speed limits alter depending on the road and the vehicle you are driving. Could you confidently state what the speed of a car would be on a single carriageway road with a national speed limit? And what about if you were towing a trailer?

(It’s 60 mph on single carriageway national speed limit roads, for cars. And if you were towing a trailer it’s 50 mph)

Safe driving!!

Free Food and Drink!!!

Tomorrow (Saturday 17th August), between 10am – 1pm, we’ll be offering visitors to the Eco-station and Exhibition House free BBQ food, fruit smoothies and Dr Bike bicycle health checks!!

Free BBQ food (including a vegetarian option) will be available on a first come, first served basis and we’ll have the fire brigade on hand too to offer residents advice on safe barbecuing this summer.

AltBikeShakesta12The guys from the Alternative Bike Company will be joining us and bringing with them their brilliant pedal powered smoothie bike. With tasty options like Banana Split and Summer Special you’d be mad to miss out (on a first come, first served basis). Our brilliant Dr Bike will also be back doing summer holiday bike health checks.

So why not brave the typical British weather that is forecast and come and enjoy all the free activities this Saturday!

The Eco-station is on Camp Road, Bordon, Hants, GU35 0LH. For further information about our week day opening hours visit www.whitehillbordon.com/eco-station or call 01730 234329.

Dream Green Getaways this Summer

Looking for a dream green getaway this summer but not up for trawling the internet to find transport information as well as holiday locations? Then we might just have the answer for you.

Green traveller is one of a number of sites which highlight inspiring holidays you can go on without having to set foot in an airport terminal.

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For starters the site includes information on ferries, trains and coaches to get you to your destinations.

It includes information on home grown holiday options in the UK, such as their guides on Car-free travel in the UK’s national parks, as well as international adventures, like Electric Bike Cycling holidays in Switzerland, Austria, Portugal and Italy.

Finally, the site also gives advice on eco-concious accommodation, days out and places to eat to enable you to tailor your Green Getaway to you and your family.

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Other websites with similar advice include Eco Travelling and for those who want more detailed alternatives to flying both Loco2 and The Man in Seat 61 are brilliant sources of information.

New bus proves popular

The newest addition to the public transport options in Whitehill & Bordon, the Eco-bus, is proving popular with more than 1000 passenger journeys in its first eight weeks of operation.

Between mid May and early July the service has grown from an average of 14 passengers a day to 27 passengers a day and we hope it will continue to increase as more people try the service.

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The service which runs three routes around the town and nearby villages (including Blackmoor, Greatham, Lindford and Standford) is certainly being used.

An adult single fare is £1.50 and a return ticket costs £2.25 (Child single: 75p, Child return: £1.15). The bus also accepts older person’s bus passes.

Please find the Bus Route map and Bus Route timetable attached. This information can also be found on our website, (www.whitehillbordon.com) at the Forest Community Centre, the Eco-station and on bus stops along the route.

Design competition winners to give Bordon bus an new look

The new Whitehill & Bordon bus is going to get a new look, thanks to the children from the town.

On the 13th May 2013, when the bus was being launched, we were also launching a competition with local junior schools (Hollywater School, St Matthews Church of England Primary School, Woodlea Primary School, Bordon Junior School and Weyford Junior School)  to get students to come up with designs for the outside of the bus.

The children were asked to come up with ideas for the back, front and sides of the bus and we were inundated; with over 200 entries.

On Friday (12th July) the judging panel, including Rob Allerston from the Phoenix Theatre, Graeme Fraser from AMK (the bus company running the service) and the Mayor, Tony Muldoon settled down to find a winner.

Some of the judges (L-R - Rob Allerston (Phoenix Theatre), Cllr Tony Muldoon (Town Mayor), Greame Fraser (AMK), Cllr Chris Wherrell (Deputy Mayor) and Ann Wherrell)

Some of the judges (L-R – Rob Allerston (Phoenix Theatre), Cllr Tony Muldoon (Town Mayor), Greame Fraser (AMK), Cllr Chris Wherrell (Deputy Mayor) and Ann Wherrell)

With so many to go through we did wonder if we would agree on anything but as the judging neared its end it was clear that we were all in agreement.

So, with a unanimous vote, in first place was Patricia Parratt from Bordon Junior School. Her designs on the drivers and boarding side of the bus, which combined both the urban and rural nature of the town, were great and we loved the rabbit design.

In second place Dylan Appleby from Weyford Junior School won over the judges with his slogan ‘Next time you see me hop on’ which combined brilliantly with Patricia’s rabbit design.

Dylan Appleby (2nd prize winner),  Kim Hardwick (Town Transport Manager) and Patricia Parratt (1st prize winner).

Dylan Appleby (2nd prize winner), Kim Hardwick (Town Transport Manager) and Patricia Parratt (1st prize winner).

The judging panel agreed that both Patricia and Dylan’s designs worked so well together that both designs would be included in the final design for the bus. As part of the first prize Patricia will also be invited to see her design being worked up, before it’s launch in the Autumn.

A special mention also went to Madison Cottrell from Woodlea Primary School. Her animal design, which included a rainbow zebra and a blue spotted giraffe really won over the judges with its inventiveness.

To see the top three designs you’ll need to come to the Eco-station, from this Saturday (20th July) as we will be displaying copies of Patricia, Dylan and Madison’s work. We will also be presenting some of the other 200 entries, at the Eco-station, over the course of the summer holidays so pop in to see a selection of the brilliant entries we received.

Once again, a massive congratulations goes to our winners and thanks to all the students who submitted entries. We are really looking forward to seeing the final design in the autumn.