Roadworks batter chippy's business
CHIP shop owner Dave Brookes claims badly-planned roadworks have driven away his customers.
Dave's Fish Bar has been left high and dry by work taking place in St Bernard's Road, Knutton, which started on Monday and are to continue for two weeks.
Highways engineers from Staffordshire County Council are in the process of carrying out resurfacing work to the road and pavements.
And Dave says customers have been unable to access his shop due to the road being closed.
Panasonic Store Camera•20x Optical Zoom LEICA DC Lens from 24mm...View details
What Digital camera Gold award winning DMCTZ40
SAVE £20 off our store price ONLY with this voucher
Plus you can also claim a SD card or spare battery
Choice of colours, free parking behind store
Terms: Print this voucher and hand in at Panasonic Store Hanley to save £20 off our store price ONLY £269.90
Contact: 01782 342609
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
This has put the business under considerable strain, which Dave believes could have been avoided with better planning.
He said: "I might as well close until the roadworks have finished because I'm not getting any customers at all. We rely heavily on passing trade, but because of the roadworks there hasn't been anyone passing by. It's not just me who's affected. I've got two staff, but I'm not going to be able to pay them if we don't have any customers.
"I only really had two weeks notice as well. I knew before that some roadworks would be happening, but they only told me when it would be going ahead two weeks ago."
Barriers have been erected at either end of St Bernard's Road, at its junctions with Lower Milehouse Lane and St Giles Road, although signs say businesses are open as usual and that access is still available.
But Dave believes the works should have been done in stages, rather than all in one go.
He added: "It's just been so badly organised. Rather than closing the whole road for three weeks, they should have done one half then, then when that was finished they could have done the other half. That wouldn't have caused this much disruption.
"I think they've done it this way because I'm the only business in a residential street."
While residents in St Bernard's Road sympathised with Dave's situation, they said the roadworks were necessary.
Lindsey Griffiths, aged 42, said: "I can see Dave's point because it's his livelihood. But I know the roadworks need doing, and I don't even drive. You see cars breaking their exhausts because of the potholes in the road, and it's only got worse over winter."
Mike Maryon, cabinet member for highways and transport at the county council, said the essential maintenance work was being carried out in order to make St Bernard's Road safer and more user-friendly.
He said: "While we kept the road open to motorists when work initially began, due to health and safety requirements, it has become necessary to close the road, to allow the final stages of the work to be completed.
"However, the road is still accessible to pedestrians and we have put up notices advising people that businesses are open as usual. I would ask people for their co-operation and understanding, as in the long-run, they will benefit from the essential improvements that we're making."