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Permission for outdoor seating for Margherita's Creperie in Middle Street, Deal, revoked after rubbish uncollected

Traffic chaos and uncollected rubbish and has led to an authorised road closure being revoked.

Two businesses were granted special permission to place outdoor tables and chairs in Middle Street, Deal.

Tables, chairs and a road sign block the way

One, the Margherita's Creperie restaurant, was allowed to do this during its six days a week of trading.

But matters came to a head when delivery lorries couldn't get through and the closure times clashed with the 2pm rubbish collection time for the area.

That left household waste uncollected for three days in the Conservation Area.

Dover District Council today announced it was cancelling the permission instantly.

Margaret Baluta, proprieter of Margherita's in Middle Street, has passed her copy of the notice to Kent Online and her protest letter against it.

"Why is it suddenly not working now?" Margaret Baluta

Her reply to the council said: "Why was there no communication with DDC refuse collection regarding the 12pm road closure? "It worked for three weeks. Why is it suddenly not working now?

" Why has there suddenly been an influx of HGV's wanting to exit via Middle Street. It has never been the case in all the years I've lived here."

The council's letter to Mrs Baluta listed three incidents in Middle Street that made it change its mind.

Firstly, last Thursday, June 3, a delivery was forced to turn into Market Street with difficulty, narrowly missing the house on the corner of Middle Street and Market Street.

Secondly, the next day, a HGV delivery lorry could not exit Middle Street and the driver moved signs to get through.

Refuse bags were not collected for three days at Middle Street. Picture Susan Carlyle
Refuse bags were not collected for three days at Middle Street. Picture Susan Carlyle

Thirdly, that same Friday, a dustcart was unable to access Middle Street causing waste to be left uncollected.

The contractors Veolia could not return to pick it up until the next Monday morning, meaning bin bags were left outside for the weekend with seagulls ripping them apart.

It was this last incident that got to the attention of Kent Online and it first broke the news of the chaos on Monday with the first available details.

CCTV video eventually emerged of restaurant tables and chairs left on the carriageway of Middle Street on Fruday, June 4, plus a "road closed" sign and a dustcart at King Street unable to get in.

A neighbour, who did not want to be named, told Kent Online: "The bin men have to enter Middle Street at the King Street end and reverse down Middle Street to collect bins and on Friday they were refused entry to do so.

"No one barely even sits out there to eat." Local resident

The woman neighbour said an elderly woman had to bring her rubbish indoors at night to stop the seagulls getting at it.

Her partner took that waste to his workplace and was able to dispose of it responsibly.

The neighbour added: "No one barely even sits out there to eat and the day the bin men attempted to collect the bins not one person was sat outside."

"It’s vital that end is clear at all times for larger vehicles not to mention emergency services.

"I feel bad for the bin men who tried to collect everyone’s bins. We never had a problem until this road closure."

Usually picturesque, the binbags were a blight on Middle Street last weekend. Picture Susan Carlyle
Usually picturesque, the binbags were a blight on Middle Street last weekend. Picture Susan Carlyle

One visitor to the area ended up having to take her rubbish home to London.

By Saturday pests had attacked some of the bags leaving piles of trash over one of the town's most picturesque streets.

Dover District Council has apologised for the delay in the rubbish collection.

A spokesman said: “DDC was approached by two local businesses to allow a small number of chairs and tables to be sited outside on Middle Street.

"This led to DDC requesting a temporary road closure (to Kent Highways) from noon to enable this, to aid social distancing, and support local business.

The rubbish is building up in Middle Street.Picture Susan Carlyle
The rubbish is building up in Middle Street.Picture Susan Carlyle

"A decision was needed at short notice and following enquiries we concluded that the closure would support the town. "Following the opening of other businesses as lockdown eased, and changes to the waste collection times, there have been isolated incidents of larger vehicles not being able to exit Middle Street safely.

"As a result, the council has reluctantly decided to rescind the road closure. We are sorry for the inconvenience caused in this matter.”

The council has also explained that as Covid-19 restrictions have eased to allow indoor seating a number of businesses in Middle Street have restarted trading and are beginning to receive deliveries. This would mean more lorries coming back.

The granted road closure was called a Temporary Traffic Restriction Order with the outdoor seating allowed through a Pavement Licence.

A spokesman for Veolia said: "We were unable to access Middle Street on June 4 to 5 due to a road closure. The access issue was raised with Dover District Council, who assisted us to rearrange collections and we can confirm this has now been completed."

Middle Street stretches from King Street to Sandown Road and consists of around 200 terraced homes and includes two pubs.

It was Kent's first Conservation Area, designated in 1968, and since that time the boundary has been extended three times.


Read more: All the latest news from Deal


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