A HAIR and beauty salon fears major roadworks are driving away customers.
Ann Jasper, who owns Zigz, in Rosebery Street, Monkwearmouth, claims fewer people have come through her doors because of work at the nearby Wheatsheaf gyratory, close to the site of the new multimillion-pound shopping development.
Tesco, at Sunderland Retail Park, should be complete by the spring, more than 10 years after the firm’s plans were first mooted for the city.
The site will include a combination of new shop units, with other buildings being renewed and retained for existing outlets.
Previously, residents in the area have spoken out about the benefits it will bring to their neighbourhood.
However, Ann said she has recorded a drop in trade since the workmen moved in.
Today she issued a plea to customers not to be put off visiting the area.
“To be fair to the workmen, they’ve done their best to make it as easy as possible,” she said.
“They’ve been round to reassure me and they’ve put up signs to let people know we’re still open.
“We know that there is no way around it, the roadworks have to be carried out, but we just want to let people know it’s business as usual as far as we’re concerned.
“Clients are finding it difficult to get the salon and we have noticed a drop in trade.”
The roadworks, which involve redesigning a junction and installing new traffic signals, are expected to be completed by February next year.
“I’m pretty much the only business around here,” she said. “It’s mainly a residential area.
“Once it’s open, the new Tesco will be fantastic.
“The area was badly in need of regeneration.
“All my clients who come in tend to go to Newcastle for their shopping.
“Hopefully, the new development will help keep people in the city, and I’m sure it will have a positive effect on my business and trade will pick up.”
The supermarket giant said it would continue to work with local businesses to help minimise disruption and that the development would help boost trade in the city.
“We are continuing to work on what will be a major development for Sunderland and we look forward to bringing investment to the wider area,” said a spokesman.