Copeland MP, Jamie Reed has welcomed the news that the A591 will reopen on Friday 13 May 2016, but has warned that this is only the beginning of the recovery for many. The road was badly damaged as a result of the severe weather and flooding in early December.
Following the storms, Jamie Reed wrote to the Government calling for more support for those affected by the road closure.
While welcoming the news that the road will be reopened, Jamie Reed has cautioned the Government against complacency and called for more support for affected businesses. With the Spring Bank Holiday weekend at the end of May, the Copeland MP has warned many people who would have visited will have already planned holidays elsewhere meaning costs to business will be felt for months to come.
Copeland MP, Jamie Reed said:
“The A591 is a vital route for many communities and the news it is to reopen in a few weeks is welcome, but Government must not think that this is the end of the matter.
“The lack of access as a result of the damage to the A591 has hit businesses hard as footfall, visitors and tourism have all taken a hit in recent months, including over important holiday periods. Businesses not directly hit by flood waters are still feeling the costs. Government must ensure that these businesses are given the support they need.
“It is great to have the road open before the bank holiday at the end of May, but many people plan and book their holidays months in advance so there will be people who would have visited Cumbria who have holidays planned elsewhere. It will take a long time for visitor numbers to return to previous levels and so the Government has to be prepared to continue to support local businesses. The road reopening marks the true beginning of the recovery for our communities, not the end and the Government must ensure we have the resources we need to cope.”