Tourist attraction hit badly by road closure

Exmoor Zoo owners say they have lost much of their February half term business after work starts on the A399.

A NORTH Devon tourist attraction owner has condemned the closure of the main route into the region on what should have been a busy half term week.

Lynn Reynolds at Exmoor Zoo near Bratton Fleming said as of 10.45am this morning (Monday) they had not had any visitors at all following the start of road works on a two kilometre stretch of the A399.

The �400,000 reconstruction and resurfacing scheme is being carried on behalf of Devon County Council between Stowford Cross to Four Ways Cross, with traffic diverted at Aller Cross from the Link Road through Barnstaple to Blackmoor Gate.

Mrs Reynolds told the Gazette that the way things were going, they expected to lose some 75 per cent of their normal half term takings.

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“This is the main holiday route into North Devon and it’s not just us, it is Combe Martin, Lynton and Lynmouth and Ilfracombe too,” she said.

“We have had the whole of the winter and now they close it on the first week of the school holidays. It is an important time for us to start getting a little money back after a long hard winter.

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“I understand the work has to be done, but I can’t believe in this day and age they have to close the road – why not have a convoy system in place or do it at night?”

The zoo is planning to place temporary signs at Blackmoor Gate to let visitors know they can still get through to the attraction.

The work is expected to last three weeks and the road will be closed on weekdays, but open at weekends. Shuttle bus services are being provided by the council between Bratton Fleming and Barnstaple.

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