THE battle lines have been drawn in the great fluoridation debate.
The issue has arisen because Southampton Primary Care Trust is considering a small increase in the natural level of fluoride in the public water system to combat a dental health problem in parts of the city.
If it went ahead the increase would also affect southern parts of Test Valley and last week members of Test Valley Borough Council voted against fluoridation of the water.
Many members felt while there was no proof it worked, there were fears it had unpleasant side effects.
The council is in favour of targeting resources to improve the dental health of those who would benefit most.
Since then Hampshire County Council has also rejected fluoridation but members of Southampton City have voted in favour of it.
The South Central Strategic Health Authority, which will make the final decision, says more than 110,000 households in Southampton and south west Hampshire will receive feedback forms enabling them to express their views.
So far more than 3,500 people have responded to the proposal and there is still time for people to share their views. The last of three Question Time-style events will be held at St Mary’s Stadium on Wednesday from 7pm to 9pm.