Plaid Cymru Leader Leanne Wood has launched her campaign to become the next AM for the Rhondda in her hometown of Penygraig.
More than 80 invited guests attended the launch at the Soar building in Penygraig which played an important part in Leanne’s childhood with it being the home of the Valleys Kids initiative.
Guests were treated to music from a trio of young musicians, contemporary folk band Carreg Lafar and synth pop artist Ani Saunders. There were also speeches from Jo Caddy – a leading campaigner in the Parents Against the Cuts to Education in RCT group, MEP Jill Evans, Councillor Geraint Davies – who was the first AM for the Rhondda, and Leanne herself. The evening was compèred by actress and Plaid Cymru councillor Shelley Rees-Owen.
Leanne said: “The evening was a great success and I want to thank everyone involved for making it such a special occasion. It meant a lot to be launching my campaign in a building that is such a landmark and important institution in Penygraig for local people.
“The Soar building was like a second home to me during my youth and it is great to see that it is still offering a place for young people to learn, develop and socialise.
“While last night was the official campaign launch, in reality we have been campaigning for a long time in the Rhondda. From speaking to thousands of people the length of breadth of the Rhondda Fach and Fawr, I know people are ready for change.
“People can see that the political status quo – which has brought them high unemployment, reduced services and a downgraded local hospital – is no longer acceptable. Plaid Cymru has policies and solutions to turn all this around – not just in the Rhondda but across Wales - but we need the backing of the people to be able to do that.
“Nothing is inevitable about the Rhondda. I aim to prove that on May 5th and in the coming years.”
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