Basingstoke pub landlord says punters forced to catch bus to avoid walking under 'pigeon poo bridge'

  • Watch the full report by ITV Meridian's Mel Bloor

Locals desperate to dodge pigeons roosting under a railway bridge in Basingstoke say they are taking the bus to avoid being hit by flying poo.

The birds are leaving a 'disgusting' mess causing a serious hazard to public health, according to residents.

They're calling for a permanent solution to the bird mess and water drips which they say has blighted the popular footpath beneath a Chapel Hill bridge for years.

Rising Sun pub landlord Kevin Divall told ITV Meridian: "It's an issue for me and my customers. In fact, I've got some customers who'll actually catch a bus from the station - one stop - to avoid walking under the bridge."

The bridge in Chapel Hill has been renamed by residents as 'Pigeon Poo Bridge' Credit: ITV Meridian

David Clarke, a local resident, said: "You have to be so conscious of looking down so you don't tread in any pigeon mess, then you have to be conscious of the pigeons that are above you so I try to avoid going under the bridge and I normally go through the station."

A petition has now been launched calling on Network Rail, who own the bridge, to work together with Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and Hampshire County Council to resolve the issue.

Independent Councillor Paul Harvey says residents deserve a clean and safe walking route into town.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “We’re aware of the issues at the railways bridges in the Chapel Hill area of Basingstoke. We have worked with Hampshire County Council and Basingstoke and Dean Borough Council to provide some solutions which includes better drainage for the bridges and pigeon proofing to deter the birds.

“We’re happy to sit down with both parties again to see if we can find a better solution which benefits everyone.”

Residents plan to present the petition to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council in December.

  • You can view the petition here.