I WELCOME the statement by Labour’s Executive Member for Transport, Cllr David Chadwick, as reported in The Bolton News on January 23, that the only solution to the traffic congestion in Blackburn Rad is to build a by-pass.

After years of denial, this is the first time a Labour councillor has supported the long campaign by Conservatives that a by-pass is needed.

Just consider Labour’s previous denials of the problem.

It was Labour councillors who abandoned the original plans for a by-pass.

They then agreed to building in Tonge Valley across the line and more recently refused to support my proposal to bid for the Government's new fund for local bypasses.

Despite all this, I am pleased that a Labour councillor now recognises the problem.

At the next ordinary meeting of the council in March, I hope to give him and his Labour colleagues the chance to turn his words into action by supporting me in seeking a way to build this long-awaited road.

After all, it will not only ease access and pollution through Astley Bridge, but also reduce traffic congestion and improve road safety in wards including Crompton, Halliwell and Tonge.

Cllr John Walsh

Astley Bridge Ward