The countdown to the General Election is on and the scramble for votes is intensifying.

Below, in no particular order, the candidates standing in the CARMARTHEN WEST AND SOUTH PEMBROKESHIRE constituency have the chance to explain why you should back them on May 7.

To read what the Preseli Pembrokeshire candidates have to say, click here.


Simon Hart


Western Telegraph:

It’s been a great privilege to serve as MP and I’m proud of what’s been achieved, nationally and locally. 1,000 new jobs created every day for 5 years, low interest rates and inflation, the lowest crime in Wales and recovering economy mean a secure future for all families. Add a cut in Income Tax for 26m people and we can say we’re turning a corner.

If I’m re-elected then I’ll continue to put our area first in every decision – even if I get grief in Westminster for it!

I pride myself on not having been dragged into party politics and cheap political point scoring. I’ll continue to use common sense and even vote against my Government when they get things wrong – like trying to impose 20 % VAT on caravan sales.

I’ll always provide our community with a voice and with some extra support – I’ve helped 9,000 people over five years with everything from potholes to pensions.

I’ll continue to battle with health bosses to ensure Withybush stays open– Hywel Dda must be answerable to patients. About 40% of my casework involves health concerns – although health’s governed by Labour in Cardiff – which proves just how much room for improvement there is.

I’ll keep working closely with BT to deliver superfast broadband to 96% of households by Spring 2016 and ensure we remain one of the world’s most beautiful holiday destinations and our tourism operators flourish.

Everything I care about is in our part of Wales and that’s what drives me.


Delyth Evans


Western Telegraph:

By far the biggest issue for people in this area is the health service.

Speaking to voters on the doorstep and over the phone, I am in no doubt as to the vital importance of the NHS to this area. Health is a devolved matter but as your MP I would argue strongly for the needs of rural communities to access health services close to where they live.

Withybush must remain as our local hospital providing the vast majority of the hospital care people need.

As the Party that created the NHS Labour is completely committed to a publicly funded National Health Service and we will impose a new tax on millionaires’ homes and on tobacco companies to provide extra funding for the future.

The second biggest issue for people is the local economy. As your MP I will make the case for supporting the regional economy, which has been ignored by the Conservatives and which needs a hands-on government to back growth sectors such as renewables, provide access to business finance, invest in infrastructure, and provide better training and apprenticeship opportunities for young people.

Labour will raise the minimum wage and legislate to stop zero hours contracts to help tackle in-work poverty.

I have strong values based on treating people fairly, tackling the widening inequality in our society, and looking after the most vulnerable. These values will guide my work as your MP, and I will be a full-time MP focussing 100% on the needs of my constituents.


Gary Tapley

Green Party

Western Telegraph:

Voters in the Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire constituency at last have the opportunity to vote Green.

If Gary Tapley is elected his constituents will get a passionate and motivated campaigner raising their issues in parliament whilst working in the community to bring about collaboration to better the lot of all west Walian Born in Pembrokeshire he attended Milford Haven Grammar School.

He moved to London where outside of work he volunteered for charities and organisations to improve the quality of life for those involved. Returning to Pembrokeshire in 2006 he has continued with this outside life, but the lack of social and environmental justice plus the short sighted policies of all the major parties has led him to do something he never dreamed he would do and offer himself as a politician.

Having lived in New York for a while Gary is aware of how ineffectual a privatised health service is and will do everything possible to bring about a comprehensive non-privatised health service.

Throughout life Gary has experienced different education systems and knows the only way we can improve and sustain ourselves as a caring society is through education and will work towards a society with a fully funded, effective education system.

Our constituency has many people who are highly skilled in engineering construction. The Green Party aim to create a vibrant Renewable Energy sector with the bulk of our energy coming from renewables. Gary would aim to put west Wales at the forefront of this energy shift.


Selwyn Runnett

Liberal Democrats

Western Telegraph:

The central issue in this Election is the Economy. I want to see us achieve a successful local economy with well-paid jobs, thriving local businesses, a high standard of living for everyone and good quality public services. However, we can only achieve this if we continue the job of fixing the Economy begun by the Coalition Government.

When we were faced with the huge economic crisis facing the Country in 2010, Lib Dems did not walk away. Instead we took on the responsibility of fixing things by entering into an open and transparent coalition to provide stable government for the Country.

And what is really important is that it has worked. In just five years, we have made real progress in fixing the enormous mess we all inherited. With only 57 MPs, we have achieved a huge amount and implemented many Liberal policies. Only the Liberal Democrats will finish the job of fixing the economy fairly whilst creating opportunity for everyone.

Locally, I want to see a strong economy in Pembrokeshire, good quality local health services and investment in Withybush Hospital, better local transport and I want to see local government reformed so that we never again have the situation we had with the last County Council Chief Executive.

In this Election every vote will count. My message is be brave, be different – vote Liberal Democrat. Look at what we have achieved with only 57 MPs – with many more Lib Dem MPs we could achieve a lot more for Pembrokeshire, Wales, the UK and for you.


Elwyn Williams

Plaid Cymru

Western Telegraph:

Having run a family business for 30 years, I’ve connections right across the constituency.

The message on the streets, farmyards and doorsteps is clear: people have lost confidence in the large London-based parties and are fed up with austerity.

Over seven years we’ve all suffered in some way because of cuts in services due to Westminster’s austerity measures.

It angers me to see our communities and people suffering this pain for no gain. The Tories and Labour say they intend making further cuts that will have a devastating effect on the NHS, education and housing. Plaid Cymru - The Party of Wales - says that austerity is a failed economic experiment and investment is needed to grow our economy.

Wales is being short-changed by the UK government by £1.2 billion. Only a strong Plaid voice in Westminster will secure money that’s due to us, to spend on the NHS and other public services. But unless Plaid gets your support, there’s a real danger we in Wales will lose out as a rampant SNP demands greater funding for Scotland.

We also need a strong local voice to ensure that a fair share of the huge EU grants coming to Wales later this year will be invested wisely in infrastructure and sustainable projects that create lasting jobs in west Wales. We stand at a crossroads.

The other parties would lead us further down the road to ruin. Only Plaid Cymru chooses the road to recovery and prosperity through investment – not more cuts.


John Atkinson


Western Telegraph:

This is the most important General Election for a generation. If I am elected as your MP for Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire I would listen to your concerns. As a UKIP MP I am committed to Democracy including local and national referenda on major issues and an ‘IN OUT’ referendum before 2017 on UK membership of the EU. It is time you had your say.

By exiting the EU the UK would save £55 million daily in fees to invest in more nurses, teachers and social projects. I will work to bring back control of our borders and end open door mass immigration by introducing an ‘Australian style’ points based system.

Farming and Fishing are also priority. I would support instituting a British Single Farm Payment and leaving the Common Fisheries Policy and reinstating British territorial waters.

I want to see a further £3bn a year invested into the NHS and GP surgeries open in the evening, where demand exists - also bring back the Matrons to manage procedure and hygiene and keep the NHS free at point of delivery.

Locally, I would Invest energy in restoring the Baby Unit to Withybush.

It’s time to end tax on minimum wage earners and increase the tax threshold to £13000 seeing money released to those in need. In Education and Skills see new grammar schools and an Apprenticeship Skills Based Qualification replacing four non-core GCSEs which can be continued at A-Level. It’s time for change. Vote UKIP, get UKIP.