Roadworks could kill our business, says farmer

Road closed sign alongside some traffic cones on a country road
Tena Roberts wants signs to state that her fruit farm is open for business [Getty Images]

A fruit farmer on the border of Shropshire and Staffordshire is concerned that nearby roadworks could kill her business.

Tena Roberts, who owns Bearstone Fruit Farm between Loggerheads and Woore said poor signage on work by Staffordshire County Council last week turned customers away.

She also expressed concerns that upcoming roadworks from the authority, and later work by Shropshire Council in the area could exacerbate the problem.

Staffordshire County Council said access to businesses and residents was being maintained where possible, with signed diversion routes.

Ms Roberts said she wanted signs for future works to tell people that the business would still be open.

Shropshire Council said it had reiterated the need to place business open as usual signs on site, to its contractor.

"These few weeks are our harvest. We work all year on the fruit farm, and our harvest is for six to eight weeks, in June, July, and a little bit of August," Ms Roberts told the BBC.

"That's when we take our income for the year, quite simply. All these roadworks are cutting us off."

"We feel like we're on a little island and nobody can really get to us, or they think they can't get to us due to all the signs," she said.

Ms Roberts said just three cars visited them on the first day of the works last week.

"When these signs are up, unless they're clear, people don't come," she said.

"There's three main access roads to us, all of those said 'road ahead closed'. People quite simply just turn around, they give up."

"All we want is for the councils, Shropshire and Staffordshire, to contact us in a timely fashion, and discuss any mitigation such as signs that could be organised to reduce the impact on us."

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