Stowmarket roadworks continue to jam town’s road and local shops lose business
- Credit: Archant
Local business owners have vented their anger at the continued road works in Stowmarket town centre which have damaged sales close to the Christmas period.
The roadworks, which are located on the B1115 next to St Peter and St Mary’s Church, have caused traffic chaos in the town, with journey times trebling in some cases.
Workers are looking at gas pipes and the road works are being carried out by Cadent, a company that runs and maintains parts of the East Anglian gas network.
Nicky Elmer, who co-owns Molls and Dolls, a ladies fashion shop on the corner of the junction between B1115 and Market Place said that the road works has reduce business substantially.
She said: “We get no traffic driving past anymore which means we get less people stopping and coming in.
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“A large portion of our business is from people popping in as they travel past as they look through our window but we haven’t had that at all recently. It’s tough because it is coming up to Christmas which is usually a busy time.
“We understand that the work needs to go ahead and we support the work being done, it is just the noise and the lack of information which has annoyed us.”
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The road works have been on the B1115 for nearly six weeks and plans are to stop the works over Christmas to then start again in January.
A spokesperson from Cadent said: “We have been doing all we can to complete the work as soon as possible including inserting the new pipes into the existing pipes where possible.
“Under certain circumstances small businesses which feel they have been adversely affected by our work may be eligible for compensation if certain criteria are met.”
Jana Tarling, who runs Petite Pancakes which is next door to Molls and Dolls, said: “ I would definitely say that business is down this month.
“It’s not very nice for customers to be here eating and to see that view outside the window. We have lost a lot of business because there are no cars coming past.
“We may have been able to plan a little bit if we knew about it earlier but we haven’t been told anything.”
Local residents have also suffered from the road works.
Steve Hurn lives in Stowmarket and has stopped driving into the town because of the traffic caused.
He said: “The state of the roadworks on the B1115 is absolutely ridiculous. It is the main road into town and it is always rammed with cars.
“I’ve stopped going into town now and I think that a lot of people will be doing the same because the traffic is so bad.”