Gasworks costing Co-op ‘£7k a week’

Kathleen Ford
Kathleen Ford

Co-op on Winslow High Street is losing £7,000 a week as gas works continue to ‘kill trade’ for businesses.

The work is preventing roadside parking on the High Street and temporary traffic lights are causing traffic chaos.

Roadworks in Winslow

Roadworks in Winslow

It means shops like Co-op are missing out on business because customers are unable to park up and pop in.

Assistant manager of the Co-op, Kieran Pollard, said the shop is suffering.

“It’s been even worse this week and it’s costing us an absolute fortune,” he said.

“We’re 18 per cent down on where we should be.

“It’s costing us £7,000 a week. Customers have noticed how quiet it is and the main issue is the parking outside – people can’t grab a few things and go.

“And the car parks are completely full up.

“It’s very difficult for the mobility impaired.

“There’s not much space for them, so a lot of people have not even tried to get into the shop.

“It’s been an absolute nightmare for delivery lorries.

“I’ve got no idea where they’ve been parking because they’ve had to wheel stuff down the road.”

Plenty of other businesses are being hit hard.

Kathleen Ford, part-owner of Rooney’s tearooms, is fed up with the gasworks because her elderly regulars are not able to park outside.

She said: “It could have been avoided – that’s the annoying thing.

“All this nastiness of us getting upset is because of a lack of communication from the start.

“It all should have been communicated beter.

“I would have shut it and gone on holiday – which I could definitely do with.”

Lynda Glasson regularly meets her friend from Milton Keynes at the tearooms.

She said: “It’s such a shame, because it’s a lovely shop. But when you’re trying to talk, there’s just too much noise.”

Butcher Garry Smith said: “It’s killed trade.

“We’re well down on a normal week – around 20 per cent. People can’t just nip in because they can’t stop. It’s a bummer. I know the work has to be done but it seems to be dragging on.”

SGN, which is carrying out the gasworks, has apologised for the inconvenience as the ‘vital work’ takes place.

It says a compensation scheme is in place for businesses which suffer a ‘genuine loss of trade’.