Traders in Widemarsh Street are bracing themselves for the challenges they anticipate when work begins on March 13 to replace the existing kerbs.

At Printer + Tailor Karon Hamilton is resigned to the disruption that lies ahead, but frustrated by the timing, with other business owners worried it will be a "nightmare".

"With trading so difficult at the moment anyway I wish the timing had been better," she said.

"If they'd started at the beginning of the year, it would have made a lot more sense from a trading point of view, and we would have been ready for late spring and Easter. It's just one thing after another."


Karon added: "Deliveries will be a bit of a nightmare. They will be bringing them in through Maylords, but I'm not sure how that will work in practical terms – sometimes drivers don't come with pallet trucks and, if it's not planned properly, that's going to be a problem."

The kerbs, which have been the cause of several trips and falls since being installed in 2011, will be replaced in a four-month project from March.

Despite the disruption, however, Karon is pleased to see something being done about the kerbs.

"I have seem some of the injuries that have happened outside the shop, including head injuries and a young lad who came off his bike and broke his femur," she said.

"(The design) is not fit for purpose. We have a first aid kit in the shop specifically for any injuries that happen on the street."

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At Philip Morris, John Jones is hopeful that there will be minimal disruption to business, although he can see that deliveries could prove challenging.

"It depends entirely on how they set about doing it," he said.

"It can be fine if the contractors are considerate, if they are not that can have a devastating impact, but when the street was re-paved about 10 years ago it was essentially OK.

"Most businesses in Widemarsh Street have no rear access and if we don't have vehicle access that will have an impact on the man-hours needed to get into and out of the building, but we have been given an outline of how they plan it to work with access from both directions.

"I hope it will solve the problem," said Mr Jones.


"Overall Widemarsh Street is one of the most attractive streets in the city. I just hope it will have the same quality of finish this time, so that it remains a quality street scape – one that's attractive and doesn't have the obvious trip hazard."

Debbie Joseph at Beehive Florist agrees with both Ms Hamilton and Mr Jones that the work needs doing.

Hereford Times: Debbie Joseph, has owned Beehive Florist on Widemarsh Street for the past 20 years. Picture: Rob Davies Debbie Joseph, has owned Beehive Florist on Widemarsh Street for the past 20 years. Picture: Rob Davies

She said: "It's going to be a nightmare, but it needs to be done. It's dangerous, and people are breaking noses, hips, arms ... and it's not just the elderly.

While anticipating that footfall will be affected as people avoid the roadworks, she doesn't think there will be an impact on deliveries to her shop.

"Hopefully the work will be done swiftly and to a high standard and then things will get back to normal."