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18/09/2021

A number of traders on Shipquay Street threaten legal action if road closures go ahead next week to allow filming for scenes in the second season of Derry Girls

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A number of traders in the Shipquay Street area of the city have lodged a letter with the local council opposing plans to close the street to traffic next week to allow filming for scenes in the second season of Derry Girls. The filming would see closure of Shipquay Place and Shipquay Street to traffic from Thursday, November 15 and on Friday, November 16, between 9.15am and 5pm, where a 'stop and go' system will be put in place. The temporary restrictions only applies to traffic - the street will not be closed to pedestrians. It comes after an application was lodged with Derry City and Strabane District Council by Hat Trick Productions. However, it's now emerged that a letter of objection has been lodged against the move by ten traders in Shipquay Street, who have said the closures would be an 'unreasonable burden at any time and more so at the start of the Christmas trading'. Around 30 traders currently operate on Shipquay Street. The council has said that it had originally received an email on Monday, October 29, 2018 which had been signed by eight people. The council then said that on Tuesday, October 30, 2018, it received an email advising that one of the traders who had signed this letter wished to withdraw their objection. It added that on the same day, the original letter of objection was hand delivered to the council offices on the Strand Road, which was signed by three more representatives from businesses in Shipquay Street. A total of ten people have signed the letter, the council said. "We are opposed to the proposed closure of Shipquay Street to traffic on 15th November and stop and go system on 16th November to facilitate the filming of Derry Girls," the letter states. "We are already in extremely difficult trading conditions and this would be an unreasonable burden at any time and more so at the start of the Christmas trading. "We wish to know what decision, if any, has been reached by the council over the proposal to close Shipquay Street to traffic on the above dates. "We request a copy of this decision and how it was reached in writing by the 31st October 2018." "We seek the council to explain in full its interpretation of all the relevant legislation upon which it rests its decision making powers in this regard." The letter adds that the traders believe the council is acting beyond its legal power or authority and have threatened to take legal action if the move goes ahead. "We will seek an internal review of any decision to close the street with a view to taking a judicial review of the council’s decision," it adds. The letter concludes: "This is because we believe that the decision to close Shipquay Street, a main shopping area for the town, during trading hours, is unreasonable and the council is acting Ultra Vires in making this decision."

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