Jubilant Truro residents win battle to re-open city shortcut
Residents in Truro are celebrating after a city centre shortcut, blocked off by the landowner last year, was finally reopened on Friday.
Philip Perryman, part owner of Truro City Football Club, was forced to pull down barriers at the bottom of George Street after Cornwall Council rejected his appeal against their decision declaring it a public right of way.
Jubilant residents have started using the short cut once more, several in their 90s and using crutches and wheelchairs, and young children walking to the nearby Bosvigo School.
Residents Mary Pearce, Diane Cocks and George Budge had all campaigned to retain the route that had been used for generations by local people.
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Mrs Cocks said: “It was used to get to the old smelting works many years ago. It is important to the elderly and young people using it today to get to the shops and school.”
Despite their victory many are unhappy with a new fence installed by the owner along the route, reducing the width of the walkway.
Cornwall Councillor, Fiona Ferguson said that while she was pleased the owner had opened the shortcut, the battle had not yet ended.
She said: “The formal statements which we took from local residents convinced the council that they could and should take action. They also persuaded the landowner to comply with the council’s demand to reopen the route.
“However, there is more to do. Part of the area has been cordoned off by the landowner by a fence. I will now try to get the status of this right of way formalised to minimise the risk of it being obstructed in the future and try to get the fence removed.”
The businessman, who runs A2B taxis, wanted to use the yard to maintain and clean his fleet of vehicles.
He was given until Friday (SEP 20) to open the route or face council enforcement action.
Mr Perryman told the West Briton that the site was now useless and that he had laid off two members of staff employed to work there.
He said: “The fence is there for safety reasons. If they are not happy now that is ridiculous. You can get a wheelchair through the walkway.
“I am shocked that people are not happy with what I have done. When I bought the site it hadn’t been used for years and I my (legal) searches showed that there was no right of way.
“I don’t know what to do with the site now. I can’t work from there. It is very frustrating. All I am trying to do is make a living.”