ROAD WORKS, footpath closures, construction delays – these are just a few of the complaints from Kendal residents about the ongoing flood defense works in the town, but they are having very real effects on the economy of the city, according to a business owner.
Tony Leach, who took over as owner of the Ring O’ Bells pub next to Kendal Parish Church in Kirkland in November 2021, insists the logistical disruption caused by the £76m scheme sterling “deter people” from entering the city:
“For us, the frustration is that the construction work has gone over.
“Work has been underway on the outside car park since we took over the pub.
“It was due to be completed in June, and the Environment Agency told us over the phone that the delay was due to a paperwork error – there is never any communication by letter or email.
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“Their attitude is that this car park has 50 spaces because they moved 50 cars for resident parking – but there are 100 spaces there because people come and go all day.
“During the day there is nowhere to park at this end of town.
“The car park does not belong to the pub, but it does belong to us.
“We took the business into consideration parking in our business model, we imagined people parking there, walking around town and calling us on the way home for a drink or a bite to eat.
“It’s not just us, businesses around this car park are also affected, there’s nowhere to stop a car along this busy road, and when you can pull over, on Highgate , It is too far.
“People won’t park in a different area to walk back unless it’s desperate.
“We’re at one of Kendal’s front doors, with the Romneys, and we’ve lost that stop-and-shop mentality.
“All this work that makes it difficult to get around town puts people off.
“We had broken glasses because of the vibrations of the site, constant noise pollution, sometimes as early as 7am, with generators still running after the pub closed!”
A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said:
“Increased technical complexity, including archaeological work which uncovered more finds than expected and provided insights into Kendal’s history, has led to work in the parish church area taking a bit longer. sooner than expected.”
READ MORE: ‘Many residents happy’ – Councilor backs flood defense works
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