KINVER traders are celebrating a victory for people power after traffic bosses ordered a U-turn on a controversial new road layout.

A £900,000 scheme of improvements to the village High Street sparked a storm of protest after traffic calming measures were blamed for a drop in trade.

After the scheme was completed earlier this year, shopkeepers complained pinch points and confusing signs were making life difficult for motorists and the village was becoming a ghost town.

Under pressure from villagers, Kinver Parish Council and MP Gavin Williamson, Staffordshire County Council has now agreed to make the system more driver friendly.

Mr Williamson said: “This is a victory for everyone involved, Kinver is a brilliant place to shop and we want everyone to know it is open for business.

“The scheme created a very attractive appearance and we have got rid of some nuisance parts that created too much confusion, that has got to be welcomed.”

Sue Foxall, from Kinver Travel Centre on the High Street, said: “They can’t make it any worse, so anything they do will be an advantage.

“We are a village and people pop into a village but at the moment we are not getting the footflow.

“Being a travel agent people can ring us but for other shops it is a very difficult situation so this is a step in the right direction.”

Work began on Monday (October 24) to take out pinch points near the doctor’s surgery and the Plough and Harrow pub while new signs showing traffic priorities are to be installed.

The improvements, which are expected to take two weeks to complete, have been welcomed by Kinver Parish Council, which received more than 250 responses to a survey about the new-look High Street.

Parish council clerk, Jenny Spaull, said: “This is good news, we had concerns about those pinch points before they were put in and this will help traffic flow.

“There is a problem nationally with people not using high streets and we ask people to support local traders, Kinver has better facilities than many comparable villages.

“We have four free car parks and a lot of High Street parking.”

A spokesman for Staffordshire County Council said the scheme was initially designed to cut traffic flows for environmental reasons and seemed to be working, however the authority was happy to make alterations.

The council was not able to give a figure for the cost of the work.