A PETITION has been set up to reinstate a bench outside a popular Fishguard pub which has been deemed an obstruction by the Trunk Road Agency (TRA).

The bench outside the Royal Oak was instated when the pub reopened in 2016. The single plank was fitted flush to the exterior wall of the pub and was well-used by customers, locals, visitors and travellers waiting for the bus.

The TRA said it had received complaints about the bench and wrote to the pub saying that the bench was obstructing the highway, contrary to the Highways Act 1980, and had to be removed within seven days.

"The South Wales Trunk Road Agent has received complaints regarding a bench which has placed outside the Royal Oak Public House which is causing an obstruction of the highway," read the letter.

"The purpose of this letter is therefore to kindly request that you arrange for the bench to be removed."

The pub has followed this request, but the removal of the bench has been met with outcry, locals have written to the TRA to ask that it is put back and a petition set up to reinstate it.

"The bench was put there as a temporary measure for one of the Fishguard Folk Festivals," said the Royal Oak's owner Oliver Blakiston.

"It wasn't meant to be a permanent fixture, but it proved so popular it was left there. It's now been taken away and everyone is complaining about it to us in the pub. Everyone's going mad.

"The bench was for the general public to use, not just my customers. It is on the sunny side of the square and people like sitting there.

"I might be able to apply to put something there. We need some sort of community bench there. It's not about the pub."

The petition to return the bench was set up by Royal Oak barmaid, Jodie Murphy, in response to comments from customers. It has gained dozens of signatures so far.

It is available to sign in the Royal Oak as well as the Orange Tree, Coach House and Joy's Card Cabin.