CITY councillors have had concerns for a number of years over the stretch of road where a collision occurred, leaving three children with "potentially life-changing injuries".

On Thursday September 10 a double-decker bus travelling to Henry Beaufort secondary school crashed into a railway bridge in Wellhouse Lane, Headbourne Worthy.

Seventy-two pupils were onboard, three of those were taken to hospital and 12 others suffered minor injuries in the incident.

Hampshire Constabulary's Serious Collision Investigation Unit is continuing enquiries into the crash.

Winchester city councillors for The Worthys Jackie Porter, Jane Rutter and Malcolm Prince hope that the full investigation will reveal the facts of the matter so that there won’t be a repeat of the incident.

Speaking on behalf of The Worthys councillors, Cllr Porter said: “It was a terrible start to the children’s first week back to school after so many months.

My heart goes out to all the children and their families.

“Some children have been hurt, and many were frightened by the experience.

“I have talked to some of the parents and it was heartening to hear how the children looked after each other, and how members of the public helped at the scene.

"It is probable that there are many contributory factors to the crash. I hope that the full investigation will reveal the facts of the matter so that it won’t happen again.

“Parents have told me that the bus service hasn’t been consistent this term, and the last few children to get on the double decker bus were struggling to find a seat.”

Concerns have also been made about the safety on the stretch of road, with councillors calling for changes for several years.

“The road was awaiting a full resurface - we have been waiting for several years for resurfacing, but it had been delayed, awaiting extensive drainage works. HCC Highways officers attended the scene. Only the full crash investigation can reveal the facts,” Cllr Porter said.

“We have been pressing for the footpath and cycle route from the Worthys to Henry Beaufort School to be surfaced in a weatherproof material. I hope that this request will be reconsidered in the light of Thursday’s terrible crash.”

Chairman of Headbourne Worthy Parish Council Cllr Belinda Baker said: “The councillors and clerk of Headbourne Worthy Parish Council were distressed to hear of the double-decker school bus crash under the railway bridge on Well House Lane in Headbourne Worthy on Thursday morning. The parish council’s thoughts and best wishes go out to all those concerned.

The Henry Beaufort School is the catchment secondary school for children in Headbourne Worthy and this accident has touched many families in the village.

“The parish council wishes to thank all those who helped at the scene, including residents, employees of local businesses, those travelling through the village who stopped to help, and of course we are extremely grateful to our emergency services who arrived on site quickly, and who dealt with a difficult situation with professionalism and compassion.

“The parish council will await the conclusions of the official investigation before making any further comment on the circumstances of the accident.”