Former council leader to contest Caerphilly seat at Assembly elections
7:22am Thursday 19th September 2013 in News
FORMER council leader Lindsay Whittle has announced he will contest the Caerphilly seat at the next National Assembly elections.
Mr Whittle is a long-serving councillor in the borough with over 30 years of experience and led Caerphilly council in two spells.
He relinquished the role following the last National Assembly elections after he won the South Wales East regional seat.
Members of Mr Whittle’s Plaid Cymru party selected him last week to fight for the Caerphilly constituency at the next elections in 2016.
Mr Whittle said: “I am honoured to have been chosen by party members to contest the Caerphilly seat in 2016. It is where I’m proud to say I was born and it’s where I belong.
"The Caerphilly area, like many others across Wales has its problems, but is full of marvellous people who I would be delighted to represent at constituency level.”
Mr Whittle, who remains a Caerphilly council ward member for Penyrheol said he was “hugely encouraged” by the recent by-election there.
It took place to elect a replacement for the popular Anne Collins, who died earlier this year.
Plaid’s Steve Skivens polled 929 votes, beating nearest rival Gareth Pratt of Labour, who got 554.
Caerphilly’s current AM is Labour’s Jeff Cuthbert, who has held the seat since 2003.
Mr Cuthbert was selected at the last minute in 2003, to stand instead of Ron Davies and helped increase the party’s majority in the area.
Cardiff-raised Mr Cuthbert, who worked in the mining industry in Caerphilly county, successfully defended the seat at elections in 2007 and 2011.
On both occasions he fought off the challenge of Mr Davies, who stood as an independent in 2007 and for Plaid in 2011, with Mr Cuthbert doubling his majority on the most recent occasion.
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