Oh not again! Anger as Beck Row shop access is blocked for third time

Raj Rutnam with customers and councillors beside the roadworks that have angered them ANL-160102-000539009
Raj Rutnam with customers and councillors beside the roadworks that have angered them ANL-160102-000539009

Raj Rutnam’s customers and local councillors turned out to protest at the treatment of their local shop after access to it was blocked without warning by developers for the third time.

In spite of promises from Persimmon Homes, who are building an estate, to minimise inconvenience to customers and neighbours at Mr Rutnam’s Londis store in Holmsey Green, Beck Row, his carpark was again blocked on Sunday.

After thanking people for their support, Mr Rutnam said: “Sunday is a busy day for us because most people are at home and take a drive to the shop, but now they’re avoiding the road.

“People come from Undley, Kenny Hill and Holywell Row because they haven’t got shops there. You’d like to think villagers here would walk, but they like driving and parking outside. Some of them are going past the shop to other places.”

Though people can get into the shop, the roadworks barriers mean the shop’s parking spaces become the access to the driveway to homes behind the shop, so people cannot park there, or near it. Mr Rutnam says he has had to reduce staff hours because of a drop in trade caused by the disruption.

Mr Rutnam said that though they and neighbours had been told work would be going on there for a week, they were again given no specific warning of work that day, which has been a complaint since access to the shop and homes was completely closed two weeks ago while Mr Rutnam took his children to school.

He is pleased that Persimmon, working with Suffolk Highways, agreed to move bollards which would have blocked parking at his home, but he is worried that when they close the road again in March for overnight resurfacing and lining work, they will again not be given a specific date.

Persimmon Homes, who previously said their operations team was keeping an eye on the project, have been asked to comment.