Fresh anger at award for Hampshire County Council’s lawyers

Key works on major routes

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FRESH criticism has been made of the decision to give Hampshire County Council’s legal team an award for its work on a controversial bus scheme.

As reported, the team won a national local government award for the way it handled challenges against the £25m Bus Rapid Transit scheme, which runs along two miles of disused railtrack between Fareham and Gosport.

Two applications were made for village greens at key points on the route, which could have stopped the scheme.

Gerard Lidgey advised on both village green appeals, which went to public inquiries. He said: ‘It strikes me as rather wrong that they have won an award for this.

‘We won the second village green inquiry, but the council decided politically, not legally, that they would vote against the recommendation of the independently appointed inspector.’

Kathleen Goodwin, the applicant for one of the village greens, said: ‘I’m not in the least bit surprised to hear this, but what can we mere mortals do against the council?’