More anger over new Sidmouth road works

PUBLISHED: 15:09 14 January 2011

Road works at Salcombe Road Sidmouth. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 9811-02-11 Roadworks

Road works at Salcombe Road Sidmouth. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref shs 9811-02-11 Roadworks

Archant

ANGRY Sidmouth traders and residents were again left cursing inconvenient roadworks when hundreds of cars were sent on a futile five-mile trip this week.

ANGRY Sidmouth traders and residents were again left cursing inconvenient roadworks when hundreds of cars were sent on a futile five-mile trip this week.

Scores of drivers headed into Sidmouth from the A3052 and along Fortescue Road only to find both Salcombe Road and the nearby ford were shut - meaning the town-centre was off-limits.

A sign at Stevens Cross, which said the ford was closed, but not Salcombe Road, has been blamed.

“It follows on from the carnage in Vicarage Road before Christmas. Now we’ve got a repeat of the same thing as far as Salcombe Road is concerned,” said chairman of Sidmouth Chamber of Commerce Richard Eley.

He spent part of Tuesday flagging down drivers to warn them.

“It’s not fair on anybody,” added Mr Eley.

“The sign at Stevens Cross should have said there was no access to the town centre.

“Traffic was still driving down towards the town then having to turn around. That’s hundreds of cars a day having to make a five-mile trip because of inadequate signage.”

“It has cut the town in two,” said unhappy Beatlands Road resident Anne Lewis, “You don’t know how bad it is until you get to the actual closure. Then it’s a five-mile round trip.

“A friend of mine came back from holiday and, when her taxi driver found the road was closed, he had to go back round, and charged her an extra £10.”

Wales and West Utilities, responsible for the Salcombe Road works, has apologised for any inconvenience during its bid to replace a gas main in the area.

A spokesman said on Wednesday: “A temporary road diversion has been agreed. In addition, the local authority closed the ford due to high water levels. Unfortunately, some drivers are disregarding the closure sign and still attempting to cross the ford, then having to turn around.

“We regret any inconvenience caused during this important gas network investment work, which we aim to complete by early February.”


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