After reading how the New Forest District Council offices are underused with an occupancy rate of 41 per cent, and that a feasibility study is to be carried out, I felt compelled to make a suggestion.

Perhaps something different can be achieved by moving staff, but not as letter writer Richard Grant suggested, instead they should move in the opposite direction, to a bigger town.

I've always thought it very odd that the New Forest District Council was based in Lyndhurst. In the last census, it had a population of 2,462 people.

How can a village of that size be the administrative capital of the New Forest? It's absurd and an anachronism.

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Lyndhurst has no railway station and has roads that are regularly jammed up with traffic trying to pass through.

Why not make Lymington the modern New Forest capital? Lyndhurst could still be called the 'ancient capital' and keep the Verderers Court but everything else should move to Lymington.

At the last census in 2021, Lymington and Pennington had a population of 15,832, with more on the outskirts and good road and rail as well as ferry links.

It is easy to commute to Lymington from Brockenhurst (population - 3,488), New Milton (pop 25,544), Sway (pop - 2,433), Christchurch (pop - 31,370) or from Southampton and Bournemouth.

In 2020 the NFDC was recorded as having 1,202 employees.

It is likely they work at different sites or some remotely but a fair number must be occasionally using Apple Tree Court in Lyndhurst village.

It is, however, a reasonably attractive building so why not sell it off to become either homes, offices or a luxury spa hotel?

Lymington currently has the New Forest National Park Authority as well as its Town Hall plus fire station and police on its site in Avenue Road.

I suggest moving all office-based New Forest District Council staff to Lymington Civic Offices along with perhaps Forestry England who are at Lyndhurst's King's House.

Let Lymington be the new capital of the New Forest.

It is greener in terms of having good public transport and makes sense for jobs to be where there are more people rather than expecting people to drive to a village with poor transport links. The extra people working in Lymington would be good for the town's economy too.

If we are bringing family history into it (as Mr Grant does), my four times great-grandfather Barnabas Wild was born in Lyndhurst in the 1750's.

James Wild