THE centre of Brockenhurst could be in line for new street improvements after the village was awarded a share of a new funding pot worth £3.3m.
Possible additions to the Brookley Road area were announced by Hampshire County Council’s deputy leader, Cllr Rob Humby (pictured) – although it has not been revealed how much money Brockenhurst will get for any changes.
Cllr Humby said: “Initial thoughts for Brockenhurst are to add to the temporary social distancing measures currently in Brookley Road, outside the bakery, with seating or planters and looking at enhancing the areas where the parish council have, under licence, installed cycle racks along Brookley Road.
“Nothing will be done until we have consulted with local residents, businesses and the wider community to take into account everyone’s views.”
Brockenhurst is one of seven places in Hampshire to get a cut of the new money, which must be used for schemes promoting alternative modes of transport other than cars for short journeys.
Councillors will hope it is more successful than the original trial scheme which made Brookley Road one- way which had to be scrapped within weeks after an outpouring of anger and complaints of a lack of consultation.
The changes were funded by a Department for Transport Emergency Active Fund grant for temporary pop-up measures to help people socially distance more easily as they returned to high streets after the first lockdown.
As reported in the A&T, the new bicycle racks installed on parking spaces outside Tesco to support increased cycling have also sparked objections from some villagers, but been defended by others.
Cllr Humby, who is also HCC’s cabinet member for economy, transport and the environment, added: “The Covid-19 outbreak has, undoubtedly, changed travel for many of us.
“This funding allows us to move forward, build on the initial changes we’ve made to reallocate road space and work out the best way to help our local towns and high streets prosper while providing the right environments for people who want to continue walking and cycling for their daily journeys.”