A GOUROCK businessman says he will lose thousands of pounds in trade due to prolonged roadworks.

Hans Stetz, 53, who runs Gourock Waste Metal and Car Breakers in Cardwell Road, says bridge repairs set to start on Monday will halve his trade.

The family firm was founded by Hans' father Rudolf some 60 years ago and is the only scrap metal company in the town and licensed in waste management.

Hans said: "I'm going to lose thousands.

"If it does hit us and we take a substantial loss we won't be able to sustain the loss, no wee business can.

"I have to fill three skips every week to pay the bills.

"I'll probably be down to one skip a week."

Mr Stetz trades in steel, cars and copper.

He says traffic being restricted to one lane, complete with traffic lights and tailbacks over 10 weeks, will make his business almost impossible to run.

He said: "A lorry comes down to lift the container - it's a roll-on, roll-off.

"It has to reverse a few times and takes a bit of manoeuvring.

"It will be difficult to do that with a contraflow and traffic.

"None of my customers will be able to stop to drop off and we will struggle to go out and collect as well.

"I don't know why they can't work at night, that's what happened everywhere I've worked abroad."

Mr Stetz says businesses on the street haven't been consulted or visited over the looming disruption.

He said: "I didn't even get a letter telling me about the road works, I only saw it in the Tele then a notice was put up.

"No-one from the local authority has even been out to speak to me or the other businesses.

"We're just looking for a wee bit of empathy, to find out how it will affect us.

"There's been no discussion or consultation."

The council says that the work, scheduled to last until July 19, is vital.

A spokesman said: “We recognise that local residents and businesses may have some concerns about the traffic congestion that may be caused by roadworks at Cardwell Road.

"This is essential maintenance that has to be done to waterproof the railway bridge but we are doing everything we can to minimise any hold ups.

“The council is very aware of how important it is to give people and businesses as much notice as possible about major road improvement projects. "Two weeks ago a postcard was delivered to all the homes and businesses in the immediate area around the railway bridge.

"The postcard gave full details about the work and when it would start and finish.

"However, research shows that a lot of people don’t remember getting direct mail so we usually use a range of different methods to make sure that people do get the message.

"The Greenock Telegraph is a very important way of reaching local people and it was sent a press release about the work.

"The fact that Mr Stetz read about the project in his local paper shows the system works and is exactly the result we were aiming to achieve.

“Information about the work has also been on the home page of the council’s website for nearly two weeks.

"Information was posted on Facebook and Twitter as well to give as many people as possible the opportunity to see it.”