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Thursday, 30 October 2014

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Road closure agony drags on for Cumbrian traders

Struggling traders in Cockermouth have been hit with another blow as the completion date for controversial roadworks has been put back to October.

Cockermouth Main Street photo

Business owners in the town have faced chaos since the Main Street closed three months ago while the £1.7m improvements take place.

Part of the road was due to reopen to traffic last week, but because of “significant complications” that has been delayed until the end of this month.

And Cumbria County Council has now announced that the work will not be finished until October – six weeks behind schedule.

The News & Star reported yesterday how angry traders were demanding answers as to why work has ground to a halt for the past fortnight, as they feared for the future of their businesses.

The county council said today that if “good progress” was made in the next few days the route would be accessible for cars on or around July 23.

Main Street was originally due to partly open to traffic last week – in time for the summer holidays, but the authority said this was not possible due to difficulties affecting progress of the works, as extensive, unplanned work had to be carried out around gas and water mains under the road.

It has also delayed the completion of work, which was originally estimated to be the end of next month.

Keith Little, county council cabinet member for highways and transport, said significant complications had led to lengthy discussions with a number of parties to agree the best way forward. He added: “We have tried to resolve these issues as quickly as possible, but there has been an unavoidable delay which means the project will take longer to complete.”

“I’d like to apologise for this delay and thank everyone for their continued patience and co-operation during these major engineering works. I can assure everyone that we’re continuing to work closely with our contractor to ensure the works are completed as soon as possible.”

The £1.7m works, will improve drainage, strengthen the road and repair damage caused by the 2009 floods. New LED lighting will also be installed plus hanging baskets and Christmas decoration attachments to lighting columns.

Have your say

So much for the extra effort into getting this debacle sorted. Yesterday 26.7.14 still massive hole at end of Station St/Main St, cut through newly laid road surface, (again)nice weather no one working on it.
Cumbria County Council, Serving the people of Cumbria, what a joke.

Posted by edd on 27 July 2014 at 10:28

Well, thank goodness all the moaners on here weren't consulted. We have so many self-professed experts about road surfaces, logistics all willing to point out where the experts/planners went wrong. Wind in your necks. Cockermouth is unique in it's beauty, the attitude of so many of it's people, and how hard they try to keep the town so vibrant. Everyone should get behind the shopkeepers, and support them. It's not so hard to park and walk in - parking on Main Street/Station Street was never to be taken for granted. It is a welcoming, fascinating town. How about putting verbal if not physical effort into being positive. Crikey, the road has been up for a few weeks. Big deal.

Posted by Optee Mist on 23 July 2014 at 20:00

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