An alternative to the scaffolding has been confirmed as not possible, following a survey by an industrial shoring company. A Mabey representative reported to me this afternoon that any steel struts put in place would be in a similar position to the scaffolding, because access is needed inside the building for refurbishment activities.
This would mean that the road could not be re-opened any earlier.
Last night Ruud Jansen Venneboer, Chair of the Ottery Business Forum and Jacqui Taylor, managing director of Otter Nurseries attended Ottery Town Council meeting.
Ruud explained how the Silver Street road closure was affecting the town (traders are experiencing a hit in income) and asked the town council for its support.
Councillors said they are liaising with local newspapers about preferential advertising rates. The council has organised a meeting for traders on 18 October to discuss the road closure.
Rob Wickham of Ottery Tar Barrels Committee explained how his members were liaising with relevant authorities about the scaffolding. Pedestrian access from the Square will need to be blocked completely into Silver Street, with the scaffolding itself boarded off to ensure no dangerous climbing takes place.
One challenge which is currently being discussed with highways officers is the need to close the town to traffic at 3.45pm on Monday 5 November, including Yonder Street, which of course is the main alternative route to Silver Street.
I have offered the committee my full support in liaising with the relevant authorities.
I have sent a message to Devon County Council’s parking enforcement team, who have told me that they visit the town at least three times a week with occasional evening visits. I have asked them to step up their patrols at the primary school and in Yonder Street, during this period of road closure difficulty.
That’s all for now. More updates as and when I receive them!
Pic: Silver Street road closure viewed from the library