Reading & District Labour Party Media Release
Reading’s Labour team shows its support for hard pressed drivers
Reading Labour campaigners who are calling for a third bridge went to see traffic congestion for themselves early on a weekday morning in a show of support for hard pressed drivers hit by the closure of Sonning Bridge.
Borough transport lead Tony Page, Matt Rodda, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Reading East and Cllr Bet Tickner were joined by council candidates Ashley Pearce and Rachael Chrisp.
Even at 7.30am traffic was building up outside ForburyGardens, in a foretaste of the disruption which has plagued drivers trying to cross the town during the day and into the evening.
Tony Page said: “I have made it clear time without number that Reading Borough Council is absolutely committed to a third bridge and open to discussions any time any place with colleagues in South Oxfordshire to see how we can allay their concerns, while still allowing their residents to reach Reading or the M4 quickly, which so many of them clearly want to do. The ball is firmly in their court, and I am anxiously waiting for them to call.
Matt added: “The traffic in recent weeks has been almost unbearable it is time for a serious discussion involving Reading, neighbouring councils, businesses and other stakeholders.”
Rachael, who is standing in Caversham ward, added: “As a rail commuter I have experienced some disruption in my time but nothing like this - recent traffic jams have been appalling – Caversham people like so many others urgently need a third bridge.”
Ashley, an economics teacher who is standing in Church ward, said: “I hope Oxfordshire will also consider the effect on the local economy of the wasted time and disruption to deliveries and other vital services. A flood-proof third bridge is a key piece of infrastructure which will help businesses in our town and also many based in South Oxfordshire.”
Bet added: “I’m concerned about the effect of all the extra traffic fumes on the health of people living near major roads, something also needs to be done on health grounds.”