Chichester businesses criticise 'infinite foolishness' of market for blocking South Street

Market stalls said to be blocking South Street.
Market stalls said to be blocking South Street.

Businesses in South and West Street are losing out on trade due to today's market stall 'blocking' the two roads off, business owners have said.

"Shops are struggling anyway," said Dave Hockridge, owner of Present Surprise in South Street, "and the stalls that are blocking off South Street weren't on the planning application

"Putting retail to one side, if there was a fire or an ambulance needed to come through it would be a matter of life and death. It's hard enough to take money at the moment and it seems there's one obstruction after another."

The district council said it would be working with the stall to relocate them.

A post on the shop's Facebook page read: "As you can see from these pictures, SOMEONE in their infinite foolishness has allowed both West Street and South Street to be blocked off by food stalls. Do not be fooled by this… shops and businesses in South and West Street are still open and waiting to supply you with all sorts of lovely goods.

"Be brave, fight your way through the barricades imposed and come and see us all.

Next door to Present Surprise is Chesca. Manager Rosalind Smith says she has been affected too.

"It's disgusting to them Chichester is the beloved North and East Street and they've just blocked it off. I have had tourists saying today that they didn't know there was a street down here.

"We have had fewer people coming by definitely."

A spokesperson for Chichester District Council said: “We are aware of the market stalls set up around the Cross in Chichester and we are working with the market operators to relocate some of these stalls.

"To ensure that there are no health and safety risks to the public this will be done after close of business on Friday ready for the remainder of the market over the weekend.”