PUBLISHED: 09:36 26 February 2009 | UPDATED: 10:33 10 June 2010
BUDLEIGH Salterton has been awarded a £3,000 pay-out by South West Water after traders said weeks of road works and diversion misery had resulted in a slump in their profits. South West Water said the cash was not classed as compensation, but for the town
BUDLEIGH Salterton has been awarded a £3,000 pay-out by South West Water after traders said weeks of road works and diversion misery had resulted in a slump in their profits.South West Water said the cash was not classed as compensation, but for the town to use to highlight to shoppers that it was 'business as usual' in Budleigh.The cash will be paid to the chamber of commerce and used to provide free parking for shoppers and advertising for businesses.Traders already hit by a loss in profits are fearful temporary traffic lights due to be installed through the High Street to the Coastguard Hill war memorial - from March 2-13 - will further deter shoppers because of a lack of on-street parking once the work starts.To combat the effect, the chamber of commerce is to use half of the money to secure free three-hour parking at the Rolle Car Park, in the High Street.The remaining cash is to pay for advertising in the local press and on radio, telling shoppers the town is back in business.The cash was awarded after district councillor and local businessman Steve Hall held talks with the water company, highlighting the effect the road works and diversions have had on trade.Councillor Hall said South West Water had originally offered £2,500, but had increased the amount after continued talks.He said the town was grateful for the cash because it enabled the hire of the most central car park for two weeks - at no charge to shoppers.Cllr Hall said: "Unless we kicked up a stink, I don't think we would have got this far. It's down to the power of the shopkeepers."A spokesman for South West Water said: "It's not compensation. It's a one-off goodwill payment to get people to go back to Budleigh Salterton and shop there.