A DELAY in resurfacing work on a busy main road in Birkenhead has had a “catastrophic” effect on local business, according to traders.

The work, on Hamilton Street, part of a multi-million-pound project that has brought travel disruption to roads across the borough, was due to begin on Sunday.

The road had been prepare for resurfacing more than a week earlier.

Machinery was put in place, but work did not get underway until Wednesday, causing rush-hour misery.

As a result, nearby Market Street was closed to motorists and bus routes diverted.

Businesses in nearby Market Street have seen trade suffer.

Rob Fearon, who owns sandwich shop Number 32 told the Globe: "It's been catastrophic; we've probably lost about £1200 in the last three days.

"I don't know whether I’m going to be able to pay my staff this week.

"My wife and have just spent £11,000 of our savings upgrading our shop and this happens.

"The disruption caused to local businesses has been ridiculous.

"On Sunday, the roads had been good for the work to start; I just don't understand why there was a delay."

Fellow businessman Kevin O'Dell echoed Mr Fearon's frustration over the disruption caused.:

He said: "This work should have started at the weekend, but did not. There does not seem to be any reason for this.

"Businesses are suffering as a result, it’s a scandal.

"I don't own a business on that side, but I know a of them and the situation was horrendous.

"For example, Hornblowers pub had to refuse a delivery of beer.

A Council spokesperson said: "A council officer has visited the affected businesses and apologised in person for the effects the delayed resurfacing works have had.

"The delays were caused by bad weather. Works are mostly completed, with just the road markings to re-do, but we’d like to take this opportunity to acknowledge again the disruption suffered to these businesses as a result of the delay and apologise publicly."

More than 270 roads and footways have been repaired so far as part of a £5m investment that "represents one of the most ambitious repair programmes undertaken by the council." .

With further works set to continue into December the £5m investment "represents one of the most ambitious repair programmes undertaken by the council."

147 roads have been treated or resurfaced so far following independent condition surveys along with reports from highways inspectors, councillors and residents.

Primary routes have been treated with hot-rolled asphalt, the most durable resurfacing treatment available.

This type of repair can also be applied in colder temperatures, so the programme is set to continue into December with several additional roads being added to the list.

A micro-asphalt treatment programme, which involves laying a new surface on top of the existing road, is not as suited to colder temperatures.

Following a wet summer this has now drawn to a close, with work on 29 roads postponed until weather conditions improve next year.

Interim repairs are now being planned for these 29 roads.

Emergency repairs will also be carried out on roads as usual during the winter months.

Hot-rolled asphalt treatment programme: work still planned

A41 New Chester Road,

Howson Street, Rock Ferry

A41 New Chester Road, Rock Ferry

Hoylake Road, Moreton

Poulton Hall Road,

Clatterbridge Station Road,

The Quadrant to Carr Lane, Hoylake

Town Lane (Kings Road to Sherwood Drive), Bebington

Victoria Road, Portland St to Rowson Street, New Brighton

Victoria Road, Rowson Street to Belmont Rd, New Brighton

Woodchurch Road, 490 Woodchurch Rd to Carlaw Lane, Prenton

Newly added: Leasowe Lighthouse, New Brighton

Newly added: Lingham Lane to Lighthouse, New Brighton

Newly added: The Gun Site, New Brighton

Newly added: Upland Road, Upton