THIS newspaper has in the past urged the city council to get on with the Silver Hill scheme, otherwise known as Central Winchester Regeneration and briefly, Saxongate.

Well, we were wrong. Had the council pressed on with a scheme five years ago we would be potentially lumbered with a white elephant at a time of huge economic uncertainty.

So this newspaper now takes the view that Covid-19 has given everyone a time to gather thoughts. It looks like the city council will go with a single development partner as the best option for delivering the scheme. Many local people, including architects and, yes, developers, say there should be more than one to ensure a more dynamic approach.

One thing this newspaper is now convinced on is that archaeology should be taken seriously. Prof Martin Biddle, the foremost expert, argues so on page 7 of this issue. Council officer Veryan Lyons told a recent forum that nothing “exciting” has been found so far. The snag is the city council is not looking very hard. A proper dig would garner national and international attention and priceless publicity.