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Funding boost for South Downs bus and rail services

Hampshire County Council and six partner authorities, including the South Downs NPA, have been successful in securing just over £2million from the Department for Transport’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund to promote the use of sustainable travel in the New Forest and South Downs National Parks.

We want to improve the experiences and expectations of people using public and sustainable transport in and around the South Downs National Park. Over the past year this has included launching a new hop-on-hop off Discovery bus ticket, training bus drivers to help visitors find their way round and supporting Community Rail Partnerships to encourage people to take more ownership of their railway stations. This extra year of funding will allow us and our partners to build on these successes.”

– Trevor Beattie, Chief Executive of the South Downs National Park Authority

The additional funding for 2015/16 will deliver a series of new initiatives such as the ‘Share the Road’ and ‘Take the Train’ campaigns, integrated ticketing and WiFi on rural bus services.

This extra funding to encourage more visitors to travel to Hampshire’s unique national parks and leave their cars at home is very welcome. It will mean that visitors from within Hampshire and beyond will have access to good public transport information and options to help them plan their days out to the parks, promoting the local economy while helping to reduce congestion at busy holiday and weekend times.”

– Councillor Seán Woodward, Hampshire County Council

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A touching tale of a young man and his dog

It's two years since the South Downs became a National Park, protecting a huge area of countryside. To mark the occasion, there's been a competition to make short films celebrating the landscape and the winners have been announced.

The winning film, about a young boy and his dog walking on The Downs was made by Jason Eade. Malcolm Shaw has been talking to him about the film.

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