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Fifth general election candidate for Ceredigion Preseli seat

A FIFTH candidate for the new seat of Ceredigion Preseli has been declared, with university student Tomos Barlow standing for the Green Party.

Candidates confirmed to date for Ceredigion Preseli are Ben Lake for Plaid Cymru, Liberal Democrat Mark Williams, Welsh Labour’s Jackie Jones, Conservative Aled Thomas, and now Tomos Barlow.

As part of constituency changes, Pembrokeshire’s seats of Preseli Pembrokeshire and Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, are now no more.

As part of the changes, parts of north Pembrokeshire – including St Davids – are joining the new Mid and South Pembrokeshire constituency, which replace the Pembrokeshire elements of the Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire seat.

Parts of the north of the county are now in the new Ceredigion Preseli constituency, areas including Crymych and Maenclochog joining with Ceredigion.

Speaking ahead of the July 4 general election, the 23-year-old Aberystwyth University Masters student, originally from Ynys Môn, said: “It’s obvious that the Conservatives are playing the anti-immigrant card. The Labour Party is not being much of an opposition. The Liberal Democrats have no specific message for Wales.  Plaid is in control of Ceredigion County Council but, despite their commitment to rural communities, we see them destroying them with their decisions to closing rural primary schools and sixth forms.

“The severe bus cuts which hurt the most vulnerable in Ceredigion and Preseli’s rural areas they simply blame on the Welsh Government, Labour led, who in turn blame the UK Government, Conservative led.

“What we need in the country is accountability and something new and inventive. As such, I’m glad to represent the Green Party in this election. With our plan to make Ceredigion and Preseli a greener place to live, we aim to improve people’s lives. We will stand by our promise to get to net Zero by 2050; in fact our policies are designed to reach that goal much sooner.”

He added: “My plan for Ceredigion is to diversify jobs so that we can see more young people like me stay in these areas. This means increasing the potential of green sector jobs. The Green Party has long advocated replacing the complicated benefit system with a Universal Basic Income which will make it easier to set up a small business while holding the bigger ones to account. All these innovative plans I believe would see more young people stay and make a living in Ceredigion.”

Tomos Barlow is standing for the Green Party in Ceredigion Preseli (Pic: Tomos Barlow)

Outlining why she should get your vote, Welsh Labour’s Jackie Jones, said: “Fourteen years of Conservative government in Westminster has left families in Ceredigion Preseli worse off. Plaid Cymru won’t be able to provide solutions to the problems the UK faces.

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“I’m campaigning for a fresh start for Ceredigion Preseli with a Labour Government. A thriving local economy, a modernised NHS, and opportunities for all, no matter your background. There is an alternative to Conservative chaos and Plaid powerlessness. A UK Labour Government, working with our Welsh Labour Government, will deliver for communities across Wales.”

Ceredigion Preseli hopeful Jackie Jones (Pic: Jackie Jones)

Plaid Cymru’s Ben Lake said: “It is an honour to stand as the representative for the new seat of Ceredigion Preseli. It has been a privilege to serve the people of Ceredigion for the past seven years, during which I have done my utmost to fight their cause, striving every day to improve the lives of the people I am honoured to serve.

“I hope to be re-elected as your Member of Parliament on July 4, and will work tirelessly to champion the issues that matter most to you.

Whether that’s investing in our public services, safeguarding our NHS, or boosting our local economy for the benefit of our communities.

“I will be your champion at Westminster, and I am confident that together we can build a stronger, more sustainable, and prosperous Ceredigion Preseli to enable future generations to thrive.”

Ceredigion Preseli hopeful Ben Lake (Pic: Ben Lake)

Conservative hopeful Aled Thomas said: “It’s an honour of a lifetime to represent residents in North Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion as the Welsh Conservative Candidate for Ceredigion Preseli. Now the starting gun has officially been fired, I’m ready to continue spreading positive messages across the constituency about what has been achieved under a Conservative UK government, with getting the economy growing, the furlough scheme, gigabit internet rollout, national insurance tax cuts, legalising same sex marriage and establishing the Celtic Freeport just to name a few.

“Rural communities across our constituency need stability, and the uncertainty the Plaid Cymru and the Welsh Labour Government have inflicted on Welsh Farmers is unforgivable. As a young farmer, I feel the same pain that our rural communities feel. I will always fight for farmers and wider rural communities, and I know that the Welsh Conservatives share that same value.

“Conservatives also have a strong record in education, and now more than ever, I will be the only voice that speaks up for a generation of children in Ceredigion Preseli – where Labour’s current curriculum for Wales and the Plaid Cymru-run County Council are letting a generation of school children down.”

Cllr Aled Thomas (Pic: Pembrokeshire County Council)

Liberal Democrat hopeful Mark Williams said: “It is an honour to stand as the candidate for the Liberal Democrats and represent the new constituency – Ceredigion Preseli, in Westminster.

“Having had the privilege of representing the people of Ceredigion for over 12 years as your member of parliament, I had a proven track record of consistently fighting for our community, striving every day to improve the lives of the people I served. I will do so again if I am elected to serve as your next MP.

“On July 4, I seek your support to be elected as the member of parliament. As the choice for change and a better future, I am dedicated to addressing the issues that matter most to you. My focus will be on securing vital investments in our public services, protecting our health service, and boosting our local economy to benefit all our communities.

“I am committed to being a strong and effective voice for you in Westminster. Together, we can build a stronger, more sustainable, and vibrant Ceredigion Preseli that will enable future generations to thrive.”

Ceredigion Preseli hopeful Mark Williams (Pic: Mark Williams)

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