The Chair of Botley Air Pollution Group has called on townspeople to be more proactive in the campaign for a reduction in traffic – and its accompanying air pollution – driving through the congested town centre.
In a newsletter reviewing the campaign so this year Steve Robinson-Grindley told the group that politicians ‘at all levels’ had failed Botley.
The otherwise picturesque market town suffers high traffic volumes through a narrow thoroughfare and has been designated by Eastleigh Borough Council as an Air Quality Management Area. It has also has been subject to frequent calls for a by-pass.
Writing in his newsletter Mr Robinson –Grindley said:
“A reduction in traffic through Botley caused by a new by-pass would probably improve the local economy by allowing passing trade to stop and would certainly improve the long term health of children attending Botley Primary School and mothers with babies/toddlers attending nurseries and play groups.”
“The real threat is not from NOx, but from Particulate Matter – diesel emissions – classified this summer by WHO as Class 1 carcinogenic and for which Defra, giving evidence to the Environmental Committee of the House of Commons, said “there is no safe limit for particulates”.
The group is currently waiting to hear on the progress of a complaint on Botley’s air quality – which fails to meet EU standards – that has been made on their behalf by MEP Sharon Bowles.
Robinson – Grindley warned group members it might necessary to contemplate ‘direct action’ advising them:
“We have seen many examples this year of u-turns by Government when faced with resolute opposition. It’s time for our community of Botley to dig their heels in”.
Photo: Steve Robinson-Grindley