BELL Street in Henley will remain closed until early this evening (October 18) after scaffolding collapsed across the road.
The police cordon, which was set up at 6.20am, is expected to stay in place until at least 7pm while teams from Gloucester Scaffolding remove the blockage.
They are using a cherry picker to take the scaffolding apart piece by piece. The road is closed between Sainsbury's Local and WHSmith.
A Biffa tipper truck hit the scaffolding outside Clarks in Bell Street early this morning, knocking it into the historic Old Bell pub opposite.
Police closed the street to traffic at 6.20am and called out a structural engineer.
Landlord Bill Dobson, who lives upstairs at the Old Bell, was woken up by a call from a friend at about 9am.
Mr Dobson, who had not heard the crash, came downstairs to find his front door blocked. He was trapped inside the pub until about midday.
The accident also knocked several tiles off the roof of the 14th-century pub, which is the oldest surviving building in Henley. Speaking from inside the building, Mr Dobson said: “I’m not too worried — there are worse places you could be trapped.
“The pub’s been here since 1325, so hopefully a little bit of scaffolding isn’t going to hurt it too much.”
Staff from pub company Brakspear were due to inspect the damage.
Builder Paul Mark, who is refurbishing Anthony Mark jewellers in Bell Street, was working with colleagues when the incident happened.
He said: “There was an absolutely massive bang between about 5.30am and 6am.
“We just stayed well away — there was no one trapped underneath, so there was no point going anywhere near it.”
Simon Murton, 17, who works at Clarks, was the first of his colleagues to arrive for work.
He called his boss to explain what had happened. He said: “It’s a pretty strange start to the day — it certainly woke me up.
“Luckily, it hasn’t affected me too much as I don’t work full-time. It’s very unfortunate for the Old Bell though.”