Monday February 16th 2015: For immediate release
The Green Party in Gateshead is pleased to announce it will be fielding candidates in the Blaydon and Gateshead constituencies in the upcoming General Election. The announcement comes at a time when Green Party membership in Gateshead, the North East and nationally, is at an all time. Characterised as a Green Surge, the Green Party at the national membership at a national level is now 48,476(1) ahead of UKIP and the Liberal Democrats.
The Gateshead Green Party announced that Andy Redfern would stand in Gateshead and Paul McNally would stand in Blaydon.
Paul McNally, the PPC for Blaydon, was born in Jarrow and has lived in the Derwent Valley area for 25 years and is a professional Architectural Technologist and Designer(2). Commenting on in candidature he said “My driving passion has always been the protection and conservation of our natural heritage, global environmental issues and animal welfare. I have campaigned over the years on many welfare and environmental issues, as the nation has been subjected to a Government with an apathetic, sinister and destructive attitude towards our environment. The Green Party, I believe, is the only ethically minded party which will uphold the essential values, compassion and genuine social responsibility required to form a moral foundation for honest Government.”
Andy Redfern, the PPC for Gateshead, has lived in Gateshead for 19 years. He is former director of fair trade company Traidcraft and a co-founder of the Follingsby Park-based Ethical Superstore (3). “I am standing for the Green Party in Gateshead in 2015 because I believe that we can make a genuine difference to the lives of ordinary people. Austerity has hit people in Gateshead badly. Swingeing council cuts as central government has withheld funding mean that people pay more for less services. Access to the NHS has been made harder as waiting times and waiting lists have increased. The local transport system is now more monopolised than when it was run by local councils. Job losses have hit the area hard, and the new jobs being created are low paid with minimal job security, often on low or zero hour contacts. And for those in work, who has seen a pay rise recently?”
Andy Redfern stood as the Green Party candidate for Gateshead in 2010 and both candidates have stood in local elections for Gateshead Council in previous years.
The Gateshead Green Party co-ordinator Andy Blanchflower commented “We are delighted to be fielding candidates in both Gateshead constituencies this time. We know from our campaigning that local people want to vote green and now they can wherever in Gateshead they live”.
The recent Green Surge means that the Green Party nationally is likely to field candidates in more than 75% of the constituencies nationwide.
For further information and interviews:
Andy Blanchflower – 07906 173139
(1) Green Party membership at 4pm on 16th January 2015. This the combined membership of the Green Party of England and Wales, the Scottish Green Party and the Green Party of Northern Ireland.
(2) Background information on Paul McNally:
Born in Jarrow, he has lived in the Derwent Valley Area for over 25 years. He is a professional Architectural Technologist and Designer and have worked with many local Practices over the last two decades, and qualified as a teacher in the Life long learning Sector. His expertise in these areas, and the focus of his work is in sustainable construction and technologies. His career to date has been moulded with a philosophy – a belief in responsible, sustainable and environmentally conscious practice and I continue to adopt these principles within my work and teaching.
(3) Background information on Andy Redfern:
He has been involved in Green politics for 7 years in the North East of England. He stood as the Green Party candidate for Gateshead in the 2010 General Election. His passion is to fight for justice for the poor and the marginalised in the UK and around the world. He was International Director for Team Valley-based fair trade company Traidcraft plc for 8 years and a founder director of Ethical Superstore. He is an experienced online and offline campaigner, and supported the Green Party nationally in creating the http://www.canivotegreen.com/ website for the Euro Elections 2014. He is a keen supporter of sustainable transport and was a founder director of the innovative Valley Links Community Interest Company that has successfully campaigned for better transport links to and from Team Valley. He is married with five children and live in Lobley Hill, Gateshead.
(4) Contacting the Green Party in Gateshead via:
Phone: Andy Blanchflower 07906 173139