COUNCIL chiefs used a discussion about air quality in Carmarthenshire to reiterate their disappointment in the delay of a bypass around Llandeilo.

The Plaid Cymru-Independent administration singled out Llandeilo, which is one of three towns in the county with a designated air quality management area as a result of breaches in permitted nitrogen dioxide levels.

Llandeilo is bisected by the A483, which links Swansea to Chester, so much of the traffic is passing through.

Air quality improved considerably in the town in the weeks after the coronavirus lockdown but has worsened since.

The picture is generally replicated elsewhere as traffic levels have risen, although weather conditions also play a part.

Cllr Philip Hughes, the executive board member for public protection, said at a meeting on September 21:

“Before I commend this report, I think it would be remiss of me not to express my disappointment that the Welsh Government chose to withdraw the funding for the Llandeilo bypass yet again, knowing this has an effect on the air quality for people in the town and the Llandeilo area.”

This was echoed by council leader Emlyn Dole and then Cllr Hazel Evans, who felt the delay was “a disgrace”.

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She said: “I hope they (the Welsh Government) will look at it again very quickly.”

Cllr Cefin Campbell said the design of the A483 through Llandeilo had not changed, and that he had recently seen a big lorry encroach onto a pavement in order to get past a bus.

There was no discussion about Llanelli and Carmarthen – the county’s other two air quality management areas.

Earlier this month, full council passed a motion criticising the Labour Welsh Government’s decision to put back the construction of a £51 million Llandeilo bypass from 2019 to 2025.

Officials are exploring short and medium-term measures to alleviate congestion and improve air quality in the town – and during the motion, Labour opposition leader, Cllr Rob James, said the party was still committed to the bypass.

Cllr James said the Covid-19 pandemic had had an impact on capital projects like new roads and said he was “extremely disappointed” that Plaid Cymru was “seeking to play party politics with this very important issue”.

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