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Ladywell traders hit with pavement ban after 13-month roadwork ordeal
Ladywell businesses who managed to survive 13 months of roadworks outside their stores have now been told they need to move their outdoor boards and tables to make way for cyclists.
Traders in Ladywell Village have written to the Mayor of Lewisham Sir Steve Bullock to complain about the "extraordinary" decision to ban all advertising boards, planters, tables and chairs from the footpath.
The announcement comes after businesses endured a torrid year while improvements to footpaths and traffic flow overran as part of an £800,000 scheme, resulting in two shop closures.
Jason Slater from gift shop Slater & King said he would now have to move his A-frame advertising board and two bay trees.
He said: "They're not even going to put a cycle path on the pavement so you'll only be aware, probably, when an elderly person or child gets hit by one.
"Nobody wants it, even the cycling groups. It's, yet again, Lewisham Council doing something to make our lives a misery."
He said: "This will actually be quite detrimental to a number of businesses along here."
In a letter on behalf of all the businesses, the traders wrote: "Throughout this difficult time local traders fought hard to sustain viable businesses as footfall fell sharply.
"At least two shop owners pulled out of the high street because of the difficulties they experienced."
It goes on: "It now comes as something of a shock to find the council can now turn round and show complete indifference to the plight of local businesses."
They are now calling on councillors to rethink the blanket ban and Sir Steve was expected to visit them today (May 2).
Tony Major from the Ladywell Village Improvement Group said: "Local businesses were involved in lobbying for the street improvements because we though it would benefit the high street.
"It seems a shame if the council turns around and then prevents businesses from profiting out of that."
Deputy Mayor of Lewisham Councillor Alan Smith said: "The mayor and I went to see the traders in Ladywell Village to discuss their concerns.
“The plan for shared pedestrian and cycle space was drawn up with the local community, but it will need some tweaking before implementation.
"I have agreed to go back to council officers and see if we can find a pragmatic solution to the issues that have been raised."
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