Cafe bid for rate reduction

FOOD outlets in The Strand are seeking a temporary cut in business rates because they say the dust and barriers from the �3 million improvement works have lost them business.

FOOD outlets in The Strand are seeking a temporary cut in business rates because they say the dust and barriers from the �3 million improvement works have lost them business.

Until the end of July, the north west and south west sides of The Strand are having new paving laid.

But Michael McCullough, owner of Minnie's Eatery, has said this has meant that they can't open during the day, because the dust affects hygiene.

He said: "There is muck and filth everywhere from where they have been cutting the new paving slabs


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"What we want is a temporary reduction in business rates."

He said that because they are an eating establishment and pride themselves on hygiene and cleanliness, it has put people off.

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"People can't even get into the front door with all the barriers in the way and people think we are closed."

Michelle Fowler, owner of Michelle's Caf� said: "The dust is blowing through the front door as people come in.

"I would support a reduction of business rates. This year they have gone up from around �330 to over �400 and with the VAT increase and a loss of business it is too much."

A spokesman for East Devon District Council said: "We have been contacted by a number of town centre businesses asking for assistance.

"It is not within the Council's remit to grant such requests, so we have referred the businesses concerned to the Valuation Officer for consideration.

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