Beds, Herts & Bucks

Caddington bus shelter sit-in delays demolition

Residents of Caddington protest against the planned demolition of their village bus stop.
Image caption Barriers were put up around the shelter on Thursday morning, ready for its demolition

Villagers have gathered in an old bus shelter, vowing to stay there "day and night" to stop it being torn down.

Workers arrived on Thursday in Caddington to demolish the shelter, which Central Bedfordshire Council says blocks drivers and attracts graffiti.

Residents have been fighting to save the brick structure, even though buses no longer stop there.

Protester Vicky Malone said: "Someone is going to stay here at all times to make sure they don't knock it down."

She added: "Someone has even offered to sleep in the shelter overnight."

Barriers were put up around the building on Thursday morning but three police cars were sent to the scene when residents gathered and refused to move.

A Central Bedfordshire Council spokeswoman said workers had "full permission" to knock the shelter down but, because of the protest, the demolition had been cancelled "for today at least".

Caddington Parish Council said it had engaged a solicitor to "check the validity" of Central Bedfordshire's decision, believing the building was on its land.

Image caption Villagers from Caddington held a protest earlier this month and called for a bus service to be brought back

About 50 residents protested earlier this month, and said the shelter was used as an "information point" for the village and could have a bus service reinstated in future.

But Roger Green, who lives behind it, called it "dangerous for pedestrians".

"If you are reversing or driving out of this property, I have nearly taken down two children," he said.

Another resident, involved in Thursday's sit-in, said: "I've been in the village 30 years and I'm really angry that one or two people can have it knocked down.

"It's part of the village green, a lovely part of our village for 65 years, so why would you do that?

"We're prepared to stay here day and night for as long as it takes to stop it happening."

Image caption Caddington Parish Council said the shelter was still regularly used by schools and groups as a collection and drop-off point

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites