Green Party unveil Euro candidates

THE Green Party has announced its East of England candidates to fight next year's European elections. Leaders believe the eight-strong group is the strongest team to date in the region with a wealth of experience, elected positions, European links and language abilities.

THE Green Party has announced its East of England candidates to fight next year's European elections.

Leaders believe the eight-strong group is the strongest team to date in the region with a wealth of experience, elected positions, European links and language abilities.

Elections for the European Parliament are to be held next June, when voters will elect seven MEPs for the region.

Selection for the Green Party posts was by "one member, one vote" and three hustings meetings were held across the region for members to question potential candidates.

Strict rules were applied to ensure a fair contest with no lobbying allowed.

There eight candidates are:-

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n Margaret Wright, from Cambridge, a national Green Party principal speaker. She returned the best constituency result for the group in the 1999 Euro elections, narrowly missing out on election.

n Adrian Ramsey, the party's eastern region co-ordinator and national spokesman on planning and economic development. He was elected to Norwich City Council in May.

n James Abbott, eastern region press officer and national policy advisor on space issues. He has been a Braintree district councillor since 1999.

n Marc Scheimann, a computer consultant based in Luton and a former councillor.

n Ingo Wagenknecht, a stonemason based near Norwich. He is completing a politics course at the University of East Anglia and has worked with the MEPs Trust.

n Steve Rackett, who was elected to Watford Council in May. He has worked as a professional press officer with national campaigning organisations.

n Stephen Lawrence, from Cambridge, a music teacher who speaks several languages.

n Lydia Howitt, from Hertfordshire, who has built her own eco-house. She is the current Green MEP liaison officer and stood as a candidate in the 1994 Euro elections.

It is expected there will be seven seats up for election in June 2004. There are currently eight MEPs in the eastern region and if there is a reduction to seven, the eighth Green Party candidate will become a reserve.

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