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Press Release 17 November 2003

"Councillor accuses CAST.IRON of not playing fair"

At each of the five public meetings Tim Phillips, CAST.IRON's chairman, closes proceedings by asking the public: "Would you prefer a railway if it could be achieved for roughly the same cost as the guided bus proposals?". From the initial two well-attended meetings only three people have not supported rail.

This is a far more favourable response than any of the guided bus consultations have achieved.

Councillor Shona Johnstone, who is promoting the guided bus, has accused CAST.IRON of not asking a fair question, saying "We were accused of running a flawed consultation scheme because we consulted only on the guided bus but that same argument could be used against CAST.IRON."

Mr Phillips responded by saying that, "There is limited time so a single question was chosen. However, a detailed questionnaire is given out at meetings, which asks about guided bus and rail unlike the County Council's consultation early this year which only mentioned the guided bus. CAST.IRON has taken the opportunity to repeat questions from the CHUMMS and Rapid Transit consultations to see if opinions change once people understand that a railway is achievable."

CAST.IRON will be revealing the results prior to the County Council's full meeting on 17th December, at which councillors vote on whether to continue with the guided busway plan.

NOTES TO EDITORS:

CAST.IRON's next public meeting will be held at Swavesey Village College, Gibraltar Lane, Cambridge on Wednesday 19th of November. The meeting starts at 7.30 with access from 7.15, when the public will be able to inspect displays of CAST.IRON's staged re-opening scheme.

The final meeting will be at 7.30 on 2nd December at the Holiday Inn, at which CAST.IRON will present its detailed proposals including full costings. A press conference will be held at 4pm, when copies of CAST.IRON's report will be supplied to journalists. There will be an opportunity for the media to speak to members of the public who will be admitted from 5pm.

See Media Resources page for a downloadable document with further notes for editors

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