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Thursday, 30 November 2017

Disruption to Christmas/New Year Rail

We try to let Southampton residents know of any important information that comes to us.

We would like to let you know of disruption to the railways in and around Southampton over the Christmas and New Year period.

Please pass this information on to your friends, work colleagues, family and neighbours.

This is caused by works being done by Network Rail and South Western Railway. So please don't blame us! We are merely passing the information on.

More information is below and at the following link:

Denise Wyatt
Denise Wyatt
Leader, Southampton Independents

Railway upgrade work over the festive period – Southampton area

We are writing to you about vital upgrade work in the Southampton area over Christmas and the New Year that will affect passenger services.

Work will start early on the morning of Sunday 24 December 2017 and finish late on Monday 1 January 2018 (services will operate as usual on 2 January). There will also be two earlier dates (Sunday 10 December and Sunday 17 December) where engineering work will be taking place. Further work in January and February will also be carried out.

More than 100 engineers and track staff will be working shifts 24 hours a day to replace around 6,000 metres of cabling and around 200 metres of track. The benefits of this £8 million project include improved reliability for passengers and reduced track noise for our lineside neighbours.

This work will mean there will be no services between Southampton Airport Parkway and Southampton Central and the line between Southampton Airport Parkway and Fareham will also be closed. Detailed background information is provided below.

There will be no trains from St Denys, Swaythling or Bitterne stations. Rail replacement bus services will be in operation and there will be road diversions as two level crossings (Mount Pleasant Road and Adelaide Road) will be temporarily closed.

Passengers wishing to travel from London to Southampton Central or beyond during this period will need to change for rail replacement bus services at Southampton Airport Parkway. Work is being carried out at this time as up to 50% fewer people travel over Christmas.

Advice to passengers regarding wider Christmas engineering work on the railway network has already been published. Specific information on work at Southampton will start to be sent to passengers this week, including through on-train announcements, social media, local media and station advertising.

Network Rail has also written to its lineside neighbours regarding the work and we will be holding passenger information sessions at stations.
We are advising people to ‘check before you travel’ through National Rail Enquiries and the South Western Railway website. 

Councillor Andrew Pope

Southampton Independents Councillor Andrew Pope has also made further enquiries about Redbridge and Millbrook services. The following is the response:

"South Western Railway services will be affected at Redbridge and Millbrook stations as a result of these works.

The services from Millbrook and Redbridge stations have been re-timed and services will not run further east than Southampton. Additionally, on24 and 31 December, westbound services will only run to Poole and not to Salisbury.

Our timetables have been updated to reflect the changes in services during this time, and we are advising passengers to check before they travel."

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

UPDATED: Southampton Labour's (SECOND) Attack on Our Park

Redbridge Wharf Park

Neglected Maintenance by the Council

The Plaque Showing the Park Was Given
to the People of Southampton

UPDATE (30th November 2017): Leader of Southampton Independents Denise Wyatt has objected to the new planning application. Southampton Independents Councillor Andrew Pope has also objected. We have been thanked again by local residents for being pro-active and fighting for them.


Park land that was given to the people of Southampton at Redbridge Wharf Park, is now being flogged off by Southampton City Council in a grubby deal with Network Rail. Yet another daft idea by Southampton Labour "running" the Council.

NEW Council Bid to Sell and Remove Redbridge Wharf Park Land Near You and Increase Light, Noise and Diesel Train Pollution

We wrote to Redbridge residents in August following our victory in defeating Southampton Labour’s terrible plans to remove park land at Redbridge Wharf Park. If you remember, Southampton Independents stood up for residents because they asked us to. We acted.

Southampton Independents Councillor Andrew Pope represented you and objected to the plans, forcing them before the public planning panel. At the public meeting on Tuesday 1st August, Councillor Pope and Leader of Southampton Independents Denise Wyatt spoke up for local residents who objected. WE WON. IT WAS REFUSED. But it isn’t over yet… They’re back.

If it hadn’t been for Southampton Independents, the Labour Council would have pushed it through, against your wishes. Residents tell us: “Labour is killing our area and Southampton”.

Shamefully, the two Labour councillors for Redbridge did not stand up for you. They actually supported the Labour Council’s proposals (what a surprise!). They said in emails:

I’m happy to accept the proposal” (Redbridge Labour Councillor Cathie McEwing)
I second the comments from my colleague Cllr McEwing.” (Labour Councillor Lee Whitbread)

If you saw one of our previous letters that we delivered to residents of roads near to Redbridge Wharf Park, we warned of Network Rail and the Council’s plan to increase rail freight, remove park land and to increase light, noise and air pollution for residents. It is bad enough already.

There is ANOTHER planning application. Please object to the planning application.

It is online at:

And the planning reference is 17/02368/FUL “Change of use of land from open space and landscaping into operational railway use and construction of new railway sidings, with associated works and proposed change of use of Network Rail land to public open space (resubmission 15/00306/FUL)”.

Or you can write to: Planning, Southampton City Council, Civic Centre, SO14 7LS

If you need any assistance, please get in touch at the details on the left.

We will be objecting. We will keep you updated. Please inform us of your objections.

Denise Wyatt, Leader, Southampton Independents
Councillor Andrew Pope, Councillor for Redbridge Ward, Southampton City Council

Friday, 10 November 2017

REMINDER: Southampton Roadworks AGAIN This Weekend

Redbridge Towers: The Gateway to Southampton
Redbridge Viaduct/Causeway will be CLOSED this weekend from 8pm on Saturday 11 November 2017 until 5am on Monday 13 November 2017.

These works are being done by Tory Hampshire County Council, and they have been AGREED by Labour Southampton City Council. Both councils were to blame for the chaos. Like Southampton residents say, Labour or Tory, same old story.

After the chaos last weekend in Western Southampton due to the Redbridge Causeway/Viaduct roadworks (reported by the Daily Echo here), we've been listening to what residents of Southampton said.

One letter from a Redbridge resident was in the Echo this week (see below). More complaints have followed in the Echo. And many more Redbridge and Southampton residents have been in touch.

Another Redbridge resident said:"Test Lane never been so busy with people trying to take a short cut to no where!"
A Maybush resident told us:"Cars were sat across the lights so cars couldn't move ,people were driving like idiots all because road signs were not in right places ,then they drove down and under-bridge to other side and still getting caught in traffic other side ,most of traffic was heading up Green Lane then keeping Romsey Road to a standstill".
Another Southampton resident said:"Trying to get out of Southampton on Sunday. It took me over an hour and a half to get onto the M27. A normal trip to Christchurch took me nearly two and a half hours. I don't mind traffic and I understand this is needed but it seemed everyone including myself didn't think there would be so much disruption."

Denise Wyatt
Leader of Southampton Independents Denise Wyatt, who is also a campaigner in Redbridge, said:
"Last weekend, not only Redbridge but all around Western Southampton was in chaos.
This CANNOT be allowed to happen again.
The City Council did not give adequate advanced warnings, and neither did Hampshire County Council.
Southampton Independents tried to let people know via our website and Facebook. But it isn't our job. We are just trying to help residents. Southampton Labour that is supposed to be "in charge" of Southampton City Council. And the Tories likewise in Hampshire.
Labour and the Tories need to be voted out in the next elections, if residents want better performance from the councils. 
Southampton Independents will be standing candidates for councillors in the May 2018 City Council elections. I will be one of them."

Councillor Andrew Pope
Southampton Independents Councillor for Redbridge, Andrew Pope, said:
"Residents were never asked whether they wanted these works, or when it would be wise to do them. And I have confirmed that only a couple of roads in Redbridge were notified about the works with a letter.
It's not good enough. 
As a ward councillor for the area, I should have been consulted. But I wasn't. I have challenged the councils why. And they think that sending a letter out is "consultation". IT ISN'T. Consultation means listening. THEY DIDN'T.
It is better to listen to residents, because they know the area. But neither Hampshire nor Southampton councils want to listen to residents. They just want to do things TO residents.
Following my challenges to officers of both councils to "up their game", I have been assured that improvements will occur for the second round of works this weekend.
We will see.
Tell us what your experiences have been.
Tell us how you think the councils can minimise disruption.
It is very sad that Labour Councillor Jacqui Rayment seeks in today's Echo to criticise members of the public such as Mr Sanders of Redbridge, instead of taking responsibility for her own failures as "transport boss" for Southampton City Council. 
And it is also very sad that despite being given all week, Tory County Councillor Rob Humby has failed to answer my questions and challenges to him as to why he has failed in a similar way to Councillor Rayment. 
I have therefore asked the Leader of Hampshire County Council to ensure that I get answers for Southampton residents.
Do you agree with supporters of Southampton Independents that if the disruption is not minimised, that both councillors Humby and Rayment should resign? Someone should be accountable, they have told us.
Labour and Tory councillors should be making sure disruption is minimised, not blaming each other. Labour or Tory, same old story gets us nowhere!"


READER LETTER: Southampton weekend road closures are an almighty blunder

THE closure of the A35 on Saturday, November 4 at 8pm has been one almighty blunder by the highways agency and Southampton council.

I wish that Jacqui Rayment, Southampton councillor for transport, and members of the highways agency could have been at the Redbridge Roundabout to see for themselves what an absolute disgrace the closure was, not only for local residents but for those people trying to get home to Totton, Hythe and all points west of Redbridge.

There were no proper road signs telling drivers that the M271 was the correct route away from Redbridge to get back to Totton and all points west, and not to use Gover Road and Test lane as a detour.

Due to the fact that the future closures are going to take place between now and Christmas, one hopes that Southampton council and the highways agency get their act together so that we do not get a repeat performance during the next closures.

Roy Sanders