Exeter businesses hit hard by delays and extra costs due to Brexit

  • Watch Richard Lawrence's report

Almost half of traders in Exeter are experiencing significant delay in delivery times and extra costs due to Brexit.

A study conducted by Exeter’s Chamber of Commerce found that Brexit has caused 47 per cent of traders to experience a delay in their supply chain.

39 per cent of traders face time implications due to paperwork issues and business owners, such as Mary Quicke, have told ITV West Country about the uncertainty surrounding trade.

Mary is a cheese producer who exports 40 per cent of her product internationally but has recently encountered difficulties transporting cheese over the continent.

40 per cent of products from Quicke's Cheese Box are shipped internationally but Brexit has presented several obstacles for the business Credit: ITV West Country

She said: "'Port to port and time to time', that’s what other people tell me because I was trying to find out whether it was us being idiots.

"There are different rules at the different ports which is really difficult to manage, almost [because of] the different person on the shift at that time. It just feels really random."

Malcolm Miller, the owner of Millers Farm Shop near Axminster, built his business on providing confectionary items across the continent by making weekly trips to France which are now no longer possible.

He said: "Every Wednesday night, we jumped in the lorry, caught the ferry, deal with the people the next day, load it all up, all come back, and now that’s completely shut off.

Crates of products are being stored in shops as traders fail to export due to Brexit complications Credit: ITV West Country

"And you think to yourself 'Oh God, that’s a bit severe' but whether or not we’re going to try and get that back, I’m just waiting in the wings."

The chair of Exeter’s Chamber of Commerce, Clodagh Murphy, acknowledges businesses across Devon are struggling and she feels Brexit will deter traders from conducting future business.

She said: "Feeling the impact of the economic environment we’re in, who can tell when we’ll come back out of that and be at full flight again.

"[We] have now got the added constraint or added issue with dealing with the vagaries that is Brexit and how many organisations it may even just turn off from even trying that."

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