Exeter Road closure concern

Exeter Road closures. Ref exe 01-17TI 4938. Picture: Terry Ife

Exeter Road closures. Ref exe 01-17TI 4938. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Concerns have been raised by Exmouth traders about road closures which could see part of the town’s independent shopping district cut off from passing trade.

Sections of Exeter Road will be closed for the next six months as Wales and West Utilities replaces gas pipes in the street.

Parking will also be banned for six months in Exeter Road and there will also be phased restrictions on some surrounding streets.

Public transport will also be affected with the usual Stagecoach bus routes, which service The Parade via Exeter Road, being diverted.

Mo McWilliams, of Carnival House, said: “We have customers who go past on the bus who see our shop – we will lose all that.

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“So many people tell us they saw we are here by passing by on the bus.”

Christopher Gittings, of Sign of the Times, said he is trying to ‘stay positive’ about the next six months and is hoping it won’t be as bad as first feared.

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The gas company responsible is arguing that the work to replace 760 metres of metal pipes is necessary.

West and Wales Utilities programme controller for the South West, Jim Lee, said: “This essential work is complex and last month we invited local people to find out more about the plans and how the work will impact them.

“We know that working in areas like this is not ideal, but it really is essential to support the area into the future.

Replacing old metal gas pipes can be challenging and depending on what we find when we start work, our plans may need to change.

“We will make sure local people are kept updated of our progress.”

The first phase of work, which began yesterday (Wednesday, January 4), will see the section between Belvedere Road and Lawn Road closed.

Commuters may have to find alternative routes into and out of Exmouth with some being diverted along Marine Way.

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