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Roadworks cripple businesses

PUBLISHED: 17:49 07 August 2008 | UPDATED: 13:20 24 August 2010

Barbers: View from outside

Barbers: View from outside

by Alex Wellman A fuming business is calling on a water company to show them some respect after road works cut their trade and material was dumped outside their shop. Choice barber shop, in Willesden Lane, Kilburn, is one of dozens of bu

by Alex Wellman

A fuming business is calling on a water company to show them some respect after road works cut their trade and material was dumped outside their shop.

Choice barber shop, in Willesden Lane, Kilburn, is one of dozens of businesses to suffer a loss in takings after Thames Water ripped up the road for maintenance work earlier this year.

The ensuing traffic problems saw trade drop by 40 per cent and despite the repairs moving further up the road, bollards, fences and work signs have been dumped outside the hairdressers without a single word to the staff.

Joe Williams, a barber at the shop, said: "The stuff outside has been there for at least two weeks and we have heard nothing about why it is there or when it will move.

"Since the road works started trade has gone down by about 40 per cent. It used to be that on a Friday or Saturday you would do enough business to pay the rent but not anymore.

"As far as compensation is concerned I have not heard a single thing from the water company."

Other businesses have been offered compensation for the distress but say Thames Water are not being lenient enough to their plight.

They also argue that the offer is hardly worth bothering with as the money would be gobbled up by accountant fees and leave them with virtually nothing.

Fotou Notice, owner, PM Dry Cleaners, Willesden Lane, said: "They have asked to see our last three years of accounts to see if it has really affected us.

"Often people don't pick up their clothes for three or four months so when trade was slow during the road works it won't show up. It will hit me and my accounts in three months time but I can't show them that."

A Thames Water spokeswoman said: "Thames Water is carrying out essential work to replace Victorian water mains on Willesden Lane.

"We apologise to local residents and businesses for any inconvenience these works may have caused.

"We are working closely with Brent Council to ensure that wherever possible, disruption is kept to a minimum.

"Businesses who feel that they have a claim against Thames Water, should contact us on 0845 9200 800. Each claim will be dealt with on a case by case basis."

alex.wellman@archant.co.uk

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