For the best part of six decades, residents of Llanbedr have been fighting for something to be done about traffic on the A496 that crawls through their village during most times of the year.
The situation becomes unbearable particular during the summer and bank holiday weekends, with a mid-17th century bridge built for horses and carriages at best, simply unable to cope. The bottleneck lasts for miles at a time.
Successive governments, in London before devolution and in Cardiff more recently, have made various promises to solve the issue, with a bypass being the only realistic alternative to end this long-running nightmare.
The bypass has been approved then cancelled on several occasions, and the announcement by Lee Waters, Wales’ Climate Change Minister, on 14 February, that all but the most critical roadworks would be cancelled, appeared to close the Llanbedr file once and for all.
But never discount the power of a strong and effective local campaign. And although this instance only refers to a small village in Gwynedd, the lessons to be learnt should be absorbed by communities and local public representatives up an down this nation. By officialdom too.
People power does work. But it needs to be focused, unified and well-organised. Officials and politicians at every level of government, despite their cravings for self-serving power and other vested interests, have little alternative but to give way to such well-organised and focused campaigns.
Take Bodlondeb care home as an example. While many are voicing opinions and opposition to the closure of the only EMI facility in Ceredigion, there are little signs of a focus campaign with a clear goal. The home will be disposed of and the current mismanagement of social affairs in the county will continue, until such a time as their is a concerted effort to change things.
Where are the voices calling for change on councils? When are the public meetings? Who is holding council leaders and paid council staff to account? They work for you.
If you’re unhappy and want change, then you can’t rely on others. Complaining on social media is just that... complaining.
People power is proven to work.
The people of Llanbedr have proven that.