Open letter to highways boss

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Dear County Coun. Fillis, It’s time to step aside from your role as Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport and make way for someone who knows what they are doing and, more importantly, can ensure council officers and their staff are capable of managing projects under their control.

The debacle of the roadworks in the Gannow Top/Trafalgar Street area of Burnley can only be described as inept project management by the County Council. The project is currently overrunning by eight weeks and there still is no sign of completion. This is not some major road building project but simply installing a set of traffic lights at a major roundabout on the approach to Burnley.

There have been whole weeks when there has been no visible activity on the project and we were told, in a recent Burnley Express article, that the main reason for the delay was an unexpected problem with the electricity supply in Trafalgar Street. All the details of electricity supply profiles should have been available to the project team. It’s almost as bad as another recent project when traffic lights were installed on Padiham Bridge, only to find there was no electricity supply to connect to.

Yesterday, mid-morning, a journey of around 1,000 yards from Burnley centre to Gannow Top, took almost 20 minutes instead of the usual two. The centre of Burnley was grid-locked, not for the first time. Motorists and public transport passengers are sick to death of this prolonged inconvenience and want assurance that it will end soon.

I just hope that whoever compiled the contract for this work, put in place swingeing penalty clauses, or we, the taxpayer, will be paying extra for the failure of the contractors to complete on time.

Please do the honourable thing: take responsibility for this debacle and resign.

Wally Barnett

Masefield Avenue, Padiham