Taken from the Coventry Observer, 15th April 2021 found here.
COVENTRY Liberal Democrats say this year's council elections are a chance for a 'fresh start with new talent', as the party confirms its candidates ahead of the May 6 polling day.
The Liberal Democrats will stand in every ward, with a diverse slate of candidates including teachers, engineers, small business owners, a trainee doctor and more.
Speaking at a digital campaign launch ahead of the election, candidates set out key priorities for action as Coventry rebuilds from the pandemic.
They include moves to boost transport links by repairing roads, new investment to build cleaner, greener neighbourhoods and a bailout package for local shops and businesses that would protect jobs by cutting rates and National Insurance Contributions for firms hit hardest by the pandemic.
Earlsdon Ward candidate Stephen Richmond said: "Coventry has been hit hard by the pandemic and we need councillors who will work tirelessly to get the city back on its feet.
"Our city has been let down by a Tory government in Westminster whose pandemic response has lined the pockets of their cronies and a Labour council that has taken the support of local people for granted for far too long.
"It's time for a change and a fresh start for Coventry with new talent is what the Liberal Democrats offer at this election. Lib Dem candidates at this election bring experience of business, education, the NHS and much more."
Sherbourne Ward candidate Nukey Proctor said: "Small businesses are the backbone of Coventry's economy and the heart of our communities. Everyone knows how difficult the last year has been for local firms.
"Too often, they've been left high and dry by Government and let down by the Labour Council. Lib Dem plans for a small business bailout would ensure local small businesses are the heart of Coventry's economic recovery. By covering up to 80% of fixed costs, slashing national insurance providing rent relief for businesses on the brink of going under we can protect much loved local institutions and keep people in work."
And Whoberley candidate Russell Field added: "Across the UK, Lib Dem councils are leading the way on building cleaner, greener communities. Four out of the top five Councils in England for recycling are either Lib Dem led or run, and our plans for a locally led Green Transition backed by £48 billion across the country will not only protect generations to come from pollution but also create thousands of high skilled green jobs.
"Tackling the climate crisis is not only an environmental imperative - it's a massive opportunity for Coventry that we cannot afford to miss. Our city is already leading the way on research on batteries and other green technology. Lib Dem plans would ensure we are not left behind
Other Lib Dem candidates standing are Bablake - Mark Perryman; Binley and Willenhall - Nigel Plowman; Cheylesmore - Anna Grainger; Foleshill - Paul Newland; Henley - Tom Shakespeare; Holbrook - Anna Richmond; Longford - Jaspal Bahara; Lower Stoke - Andre Soares;
Radford - Jonathan Ward; St Michael's - Benoit Jones; Upper Stoke - Caroline Spence; Wainbody - James Morshead; Westwood - Jamie Simpson; Woodlands - Andy Hilton and Wyken - Juliet Thomas.