TRADERS in a west Dorset seaside village say they’re open for business during major works which have led to road closures.

As reported in the News, Wessex Water is undergoing a £180,000 sewer project in West Bexington.

Although there are road closures, access is being maintained for residents and businesses, and customers to those businesses.

More than 800 metres of sewers are being relined as part of a drive to reduce the discharge of untreated stormwater on Chesil Beach.

This means that a length of Swyre Road, to the junction with Beach Road, will be closed to through traffic between Monday, February 26 and Friday, March 8, with Beach Road closing from its junction with Swyre Road from Monday, March 11 to Friday, March 15.

Currently a section of Swyre Road is partially blocked, and the full closure has not yet been implemented.

Traders in West Bexington say that Wessex Water has promised to maintain access for residents, businesses and their customers during the works, otherwise it would have a ‘catastrophic’ impact.

Steve Attrill, owner of The Club House in the village, said: “We have been assured by Wessex Water that access for residents and businesses will be permitted during the works.

"This is absolutely crucial for us as it would be catastrophic in the current climate if we had to close our doors. We have Mother’s Day and other planned events coming up soon, so missing out on those bookings would be a disaster. If we aren’t open, our staff aren’t earning.

“We have been in discussions with Wessex Water from an early stage and we really appreciate their assurances and cooperation. The work is necessary and will benefit both ourselves and everyone in the wider West Bexington area.

"The techniques that Wessex Water are using mean there are no big trenches to manoeuvre around we’re just asking customers to drive carefully and allow extra time for their journeys to us.”

Millie Symes, the General Manager of The Manor House Hotel in West Bexington said: “Times are difficult so it is crucial that we can continue to do business. We are still here, still operating. We were informed that the work was taking place which is vital for the village.”

Adam Simon’s family owns Tamarisk Farm and its farm shop on Beach Road.

He said: “We will still be open and we hope that despite the work people will still come out and visit businesses in West Bexington.”

The project comes after the water company’s recent investment in the area with the completion of an £800,000 pipeline.

That year-long scheme saw a replacement rising main sewer stretching for nearly a mile between sewage pumping stations at West Bexington and Gorselands, near Swyre, increasing sewer capacity and helping to cope with sudden increases in water volume.

A previous story in the Bridport News about these works included a map in the online story which stated that access for residents and businesses would be maintained. The map was not featured in the paper.

A follow-up story in the Bridport News based on a Dorset Council public notice did not include this information, and the notice made no mention of access.

We would like to apologise for any distress caused by not making it clear there would be access for residents and businesses in previous articles.