Countdown to the opening of £20m Fareham to Gosport bus lane

BIG IDEA A map showing the route of the BRT around Fareham and Gosport
BIG IDEA A map showing the route of the BRT around Fareham and Gosport
Southern rail's new timetable launch did not go to plan last month Picture: SWNS

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BUSES will finally start to run down the £20m Bus Rapid Transit route through Fareham and Gosport next month, in a bid to cut congestion on the busy A32.

The scheme has faced lengthy delays due to legal battles and motorists have faced months of disruption from roadworks.

But Hampshire County Council say the buses will start using the 2.1-mile route along the former disused railway line at the end of April.

The first day will be Sunday, April 22.

Councillor Mark Hook, leader of Gosport Borough Council, said: ‘It will mean that people can use public transport with a lot more confidence in meeting timetables.

‘People can travel from Gosport to Fareham railway station knowing exactly what time they will arrive and plan their journeys accordingly. A lot of people forget that cyclists can use it too.

‘We shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that the cycleway will be a quick way of people moving between the two boroughs.’

The hi-tech Eclipse buses will have leather seats, wood-effect floors and free wi-fi.

Fareham Borough Council leader Sean Woodward said: ‘It’s going to be a whole new era in bus travel. Look at what the buses have got to offer. I have never seen anything like it.

‘The critical thing to people using it is that it’s got to be clean, convenient and competitively priced.

‘The whole thing is a fantastic concept but if we are going to get people out of their cars then it needs to fill those criteria.’

Services 86 and 82 will be used along the bus route, departing from Fareham bus station and then calling at the railway station before diverting on to the bus route at Redlands Lane.