Winchester’s new look Square close to completion

Press Release: 20/03/2012

Leader of Winchester City Council, Councillor George Beckett (left) with the Leader of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Ken Thornber in The Square

Hampshire County Council’s and Winchester City Council’s joint scheme to improve the roads and pavements in Winchester’s Square is expected to be completed before the end of March.

Significant drainage and structural reconstruction

The scheme, which included significant improvements to drainage and structural reconstruction, has been finished with high quality natural stone and surfacing to make the whole area more attractive for shopping, tourism and enjoying the various café, bar and restaurant facilities which have outdoor seating in this area.

New surfacing and paving has been laid in The Square, Market Street and Great Minster Street, making better links with the recently refurbished High Street.

Within 20 mph speed limit zone

The scheme is within the 20 mph speed limit zone introduced by Winchester City Council in November, and includes a prohibition of driving order (except for access) on Great Minster Street, The Square, and Market Street, which aims to help reduce unnecessary through traffic, without affecting access for residents and businesses.

Councillor Ken Thornber, Leader of Hampshire County Council said:

I’d like to thank Winchester’s residents and businesses for their patience while this work was done. Although of course access to all the houses, shops and cafes in The Square was maintained throughout , traffic diversions and construction work does cause inconvenience but I hope many will agree with me when I say I think it was worth it. We've already heard quite a few positive comments, and are now looking into the possibility of extending the work in the future"

The drainage and road reconstruction was essential maintenance, and we took advantage of this to give The Square a new lease of life. Its new look makes better connections between Winchester’s tourist attractions, shops, cafés and restaurants which I hope will boost business as well as improve the overall area for all who live and work there.”

Councillor George Beckett, Leader of Winchester City Council, added:

I am delighted that this project is almost complete and The Square has been given a new look to compliment that of the award winning High Street. The Square has always been an asset to Winchester for shoppers and visitors alike and their experience in this area of the City will now be enhanced, not only by the new paving, the new traffic regulations and 20mph speed limit, but also by the fascinating locally painted bollards.

This series of improvement projects has shown the benefits of the County and City Councils working together and I hope that we can continue this work into further areas of the City.”

The Winchester Square scheme is being carried out by Mildren Construction Ltd.

Once The Square reopens it will have a prohibition of driving order placed upon it which will mean that motor vehicles cannot pass through The Square unless they have to visit premises within it. This is a legal order which could therefore lead to prosecution of drivers should they choose to ignore it.