A SUFFOLK entrepreneur has criticised the handling of a compensation claim after his business was hit by a summer road closure.

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Anglian Water shut off a section of the A1120 in Yoxford for more than three weeks to carry out emergency sewer repair work.

Carl Bennett, who used to run Yoxford Deli-Cafe, said businesses affected were invited to apply for compensation.

But he has spoken out over how loss adjusters have handled the claim.

He said his takings during the road closure, which ran from August 20 to September 13, were £2,500 adrift, compared with the same period in 2011. But he said loss adjusters wanted a full history of his takings so they could work out an average weekly figure - he said this would see him awarded around £800. Mr Bennett said because of this he refused to handover his books and sold the business in November.

The 53-year-old, from Tunstall, added: “The road closure has had a catastrophic affect - rural communities need all the support they can get and closing the road during the summer is not the support we need.”

Antony Innes, a spokesman for Anglian Water, said: “Our loss adjusters are working with businesses affected by the emergency sewer repairs in Yoxford. We have already settled with one claimant and are in advanced discussions with several others.

“Unfortunately Mr Bennett’s claim has not progressed as quickly as we would like because the loss adjusters have not yet received any details of losses for his business. Once they have this information they will be able to work out any losses he may have suffered.

“Claims are looked at sympathetically and all circumstances, including seasonal variations to profits, are taken into account.

“We know this work was not ideal at such a busy time of year but we had no choice but to act when we did. As a gesture of goodwill we have also made a significant contribution to the St Michael’s Church flower festival.”

During the summer several Yoxford businesses vented frustration about the closure of the road, between Strickland Manor Hill and The Lane. Anglian Water said it was essential work and completed the project ahead of schedule.

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