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'Horrendous': town's plea to end disruption as 20 more weeks of roadworks announced

PUBLISHED: 10:22 25 December 2019 | UPDATED: 10:22 25 December 2019

Traffic at a standstill in Attleborough during 2018 roadworks in Surrogate Street, Church Street, and Station Road. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Traffic at a standstill in Attleborough during 2018 roadworks in Surrogate Street, Church Street, and Station Road. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

A town at the centre of a major road improvement scheme is set for more roadworks, despite desperate pleas from businesses to end continued disruption.

The third stage of the transport for Attleborough scheme will begin in February, with 20 weeks of roadworks planned for the market town, focused on the area outside the town hall on Queen's Square.

The junction of Queen's Street and Exchange Street will be closed between February 6 and March 3, with a number of overnight road closures affecting Church Street and its junction with Exchange Street throughout February, March and April.

Norfolk County Council say the work will cut down on traffic improve pedestrian access in the town, but businesses and residents remain unconvinced that the work will be worth the ongoing disruption.

One man, who lives and works in the town but did not want to be named, questioned why the work would take more than three months to complete.

He said: "Twenty weeks is a crazy amount of time to make these changes. Surely after the amount of pain local businesses have had to suffer over the last couple of years, Norfolk County Council could throw a little more manpower at this project to bring that time scale down."

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Tim Cobb, who owns The Bakery on Church Street, described the work as "horrendous" for business in Attleborough, and called on people to continue supporting the high street.

He said: "These people sit in offices and look at the figures and maps but don't know our town.

"We have one of the biggest and best range of independent shops, bars, pubs, eateries and other types of shops and businesses in one town. It's second to none and we must show a united front."

Norfolk County Council declined to respond to criticism about the work, but a spokesman said: "The ongoing £4.5m Local Growth Fund (LGF) funded Transport for Attleborough project is working to improve all forms of transport and support planned growth in the town.

"The next phase will see pedestrian and traffic flow improvements made to the area in front of the Town Hall.

"Once the work starts diversion routes will be clearly signed, businesses open as usual signs will be in place where necessary, and we will be carefully monitoring any traffic management and making any adjustments needed.

"We are grateful for everyone's patience while these improvements are under way."

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