A petition calling for Cardigan's £9m new hospital to be built by the town bypass instead of the controversial Bath-house site, could undermine the entire project, it was claimed this week.

In angry scenes at Cardigan's town council meeting, local county councillor Mair Morris called on townspeople to think twice before signing the petiton, which was launched last month by the Plaid Cymru group on the town council and has already attracted hundreds of signatures.

"Plaid Cymru while opposing the current site for the new hospital could be jeopardising the development all together," said Cllr Morris.

"The message I am getting from residents is that they want to see this new facility constructed as soon as possible and to allow the planning process to decide on a suitable location."

And in an attack on developer TI Davies who has refused to allow access to the Bath-house development, she said: "The people of Cardigan need to realise that if it wasn't for TI Davies blocking the development, the construction work may well have started by now."

And she added: "I would ask those who have signed the petition whether they have given enough thought to the whole issue, to those who have not signed it yet, to consider the options very carefully. I would hate to see Cardigan lose these new facilities including the new hospital.

"All I can say is that I just hope that the actions of the few aren't going to lose us this excellent opportunity."

Cllr Linda Grace backed Cllr Morris.

"This petition is party political. What is extremely important to people, not just in Cardigan but also in North Pembrokeshire, is that they want a new health facility."

But town mayor Cllr Melfydd George said people were clamouring to sign the petition.

"We don't want the hospital down in that dump," he said.

And Cllr John Adams-Lewis said: "We fought 10 years for a bypass and now we are thinking of sending traffic through town. There is tremendous support for a hospital sited near the bypass. It's nonsense that other sites aren't suitable. A carrot has been dangled in front of them and they've gone for Bath-house."

But Cllr Morris retorted: "If it wasn't for your interference they would be cutting the footings for the new hospital now."