Landlords of Gaydon pub seek compensation for roadworks woes

The Malt Shovel pub in Gaydon z_osQ24S21_4NqT2VnGJ
The Malt Shovel pub in Gaydon z_osQ24S21_4NqT2VnGJ
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Landlords at a country pub say they have been “hitting brick walls” in trying to claim compensation due to a significant drop in takings during major roadworks on a nearby motorway.

Debi Morisot, who along with her husband Richard, is a leaseholder of the Malt Shovel in Gaydon which is just off Junction 12 of the M40.

Back in April the couple told the Courier how the maintenance work being carried out by contractor Balfour Beatty had caused losses of 30 per cent since August last year.

Now the couple are desperate to try and recoup some of the losses form what they have described as a “nightmare period” for the pub, which they took over in 2000.

Mrs Morisot said: “We are now seeking compensation on the basis that Balfour Beatty have run over their completion date of Spring 2016.

“We can launch a compensation claim to the ‘Red Claims Team’ at Highways England if it is an improper action”.

“My issue has been finding out whether this is the case.

“Hitting brick walls and being passed around in circles is putting it mildly.”

The £11 million improvements by Warwickshire County Highways started in March and were due for completion this summer.

The couple have estimated that up to half of their customers come from the motorway, with the nearby Jaguar Land Rover and Aston Martin bases also providing a steady source of income.

And they are worried about the future of the business once the roadworks have been completed.

Mrs Morisot said: “We have no idea how many drivers try to get to us but find another pub and never come back. Or what this will mean for the future once if people have found somewhere else.”

A Highways England spokesperson said: “This essential work aims to improve traffic flow and ease congestion for those using this busy junction and improve the journeys of motorists using it each and every day. Throughout the duration of the works we engaged regularly with the local community to keep them informed of slip road closures in and around the junction. “We are in contact with the licensees of the pub to discuss this matter further.”