12:00pm Friday 2nd January 2004
Shopkeepers in Headington say they are fed up with disruption caused by building work in London Road.
A former butcher's shop was demolished to make way for a building which will house a shop, office and four one-bedroom flats, next to the West of Java furniture and handicrafts shop.
Shopkeepers said the work had hit Christmas trade and made it hard to use a layby for loading and unloading. They also fear that the extra residents in the flats will increase demand for scarce car parking spaces.
The site's developers said they were minimising disruption and attempting to create a building that would attract people to Headington.
Fergus Doyle, of West of Java, said "They've picked an awful time to do it. It's not helping parking in Headington at the busiest time of year.
"They have blocked off the layby so no one can load or unload. There's lots of mess and disturbance."
Matthew Ellett, of The Garden florists, said: "It shouldn't have been allowed in the first place. They have demolished a perfectly good building."
Douglas Riach, the agent for developer MC Weasel, said: "We're making much better use of the site. There will always be times when construction causes disruption, but we're keeping it to a minimum."
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