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Stonehenge - an idea
by Simon at 14:03 19/12/07 (Blogs::Simon)
Reading the transcript of yesterday's Westminster Hall debate on the future of the roads past Stonehenge, I'm struck by an idea...
(Here's the transcript.)

Now, the idea.

I've visited Kennedy Space Centre in Florida a number of times. The centre itself is a vast site with many attractions but the main event is going out to see the launch pads.

These are, obviously, a fair old way from the visitor centre so you have to get on a coach and be driven out there (for a fee).

What I'm thinking is that that could be a solution for Stonehenge.

1) Build the visitor centre in Amesbury.

2) Equip it with world-class exhibitions of artifacts, re-enactments, a planetarium/iMax theatre, gift shops, eateries and so on

3) Build a full size replica of the monument in the visitor centre grounds - it'd be nice to arrange it so that the main alignments worked

4) Close the visitor centre at Stonehenge itself aside from coach park, toilet facilities and security, allow full (but constantly supervised) pedestrian access to the monument

5) Run coaches to and from the new visitor centre for a fee, but also allow people to walk there if they want to along existing routes

This approach would, at least, reduce the vehicle traffic to and from Stonehenge itself from thousands of private cars to a known number of coaches per day and provide a way to revitalise Amesbury and make it a destination for tourists.

It does nothing, however, to address the other problem of the weight of A303 holiday and HGV traffic heading to and from the south west and the issues surrounding Winterbourne Stoke, Chitterne etc. I'll let you know when and if I come up with an idea about that.


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Stonehenge - an idea Simon - 19/12
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