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Wednesday, 27 August 2014

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Mutiny on Cockermouth's Main Street

A Cockermouth landlord claims traders were misled following a sudden decision to close the town’s Main Street to carry out a £1.7 million improvement scheme.

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Joe Hancock: ’This is a kick in the teeth. It will certainly make things extremely difficult for us’

Joe Hancock, co-owner of The Fletcher Christian on Main Street, said businesses were assured by the county council two years ago that the road would remain open while work was carried out.

The council had previously said that the work would be done in sections.

But last week it announced that the street will be closed to traffic between Sullart Street and Station Street for 10 weeks. Work began on Monday.

Mr Hancock, 36, said: “We feel we’ve been misled for two years now and while Main Street will no doubt look lovely when it’s complete, there will undoubtedly be fewer businesses to serve the town.

“This is a kick in the teeth. It will certainly make things extremely difficult for us.

“We were horrified that last week it was sprung upon us that Main Street is not only closed, but locked and barricaded off.

“Being a late-night venue for people who often don’t know the town this is going to have very serious consequences for us.

“There is no provision for the many coaches that feed Cockermouth’s nightlife, there’s no way to cross the road without a substantial walk so access to the shops and banks is difficult.

Catherine Bell, owner of Cockermouth Paper Shop on Main Street, said that disabled and elderly were struggling to get to her shop.

She said: “It’s been very quiet which is unheard of. I am shocked but I know the work needs to be done.”

Mr Hancock has written to Workington MP Sir Tony Cunningham to complain.

Have your say

I think the closing access for health and safety reasons is rubbish , the initial work to replace sewers went on for longer than planned and now they are behind so theyre playing catch up ,so 10 weeks is a council estimate remember , dont be suprised if theyre still working into December , by which time the high street will be empty and no one will visit anyway, so well done Cumbria Council.

Posted by jaydubya on 12 March 2014 at 17:06

Why can't they use traffic lights like the used to in the good old days?

Posted by Kate on 11 March 2014 at 10:07

View all 9 comments on this article

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