WISBECH: Shopkeeper says town is celebrating after Lidl store road works finally come to an end
A WISBECH shop keeper is celebrating this week, after sorting out frustrating traffic queues caused by road works outside the new Lidl store. And Oliver Tookman has a message for Christmas shoppers – the long queues have gone, and getting into town is now
A WISBECH shop keeper is celebrating this week, after sorting out frustrating traffic queues caused by road works outside the new Lidl store.
And Oliver Tookman has a message for Christmas shoppers - the long queues have gone, and getting into town is now straight forward.
"The road works have affected trade, but Wisbech can now look forward to a much better Christmas," said Oliver, a partner in Robert Goddard's clothing store in Bridge Street.
"In recent weeks we have had customers coming in, in a bad mood because they have been stuck in traffic for 45 minutes, and they didn't want to come back into Wisbech until the traffic is cleared."
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The work should have finished at the weekend, but Oliver was furious to discover that queues were still building up along the Cromwell Road on Monday.
He insisted that contractors do something to solve the situation -- and after his intervention was delighted to discover that the road layout and traffic light timings were changed, and three lanes allowed free traffic flow.
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""If I had not kicked up a fuss nothing would have happened. Tesco also kicked up a fuss, and between us we have got the problem sorted," he said.
"We have suffered a significant drop in trade, because people were staying out of Wisbech. We are now looking forward to serving the people of Wisbech this Christmas, as we have done for the last 100 years."
Oliver added: "I feel let down by the council; they have allowed these road works to take place at a time of peak retail trading. They have had absolutely no regard for the traders of Wisbech. However, I do appreciate the co-operation of PCB Contracts in getting this sorted out; they have done well to change the traffic system."
A spokesman for Cambridge County Council said the road works were not run by the council, but the authority had stepped in on Monday, to get contractors to operate lights manually to cut the queues, while semi-permanent lights were installed.
The permanent lights are due to be installed on January 10, and it is hoped the work will be carried out at off-peak times.