Lib Dem leader Tim Farron visited Newcastle on Monday 25th January to launch the Newcastle Lib Dem May local election campaign as part of the ongoing #LibDemFightback
Tim visited Ouseburn Lib Dem councillors Stephen Psallidas and Gareth Kane, together with local campaigner Stephen Howse and student activists for a round of local visits including a community café at Shieldfield which Lib Dem councillors have helped to set up, student residences to campaign against Labour's student tax on student halls, and arts and creative businesses in the Ouseburn Valley at Cobalt Studios.
Tim then joined Lib Dem councillors Greg Stone and Wendy Taylor to visit Newcastle Citizens Advice Bureau, which faces closure after Newcastle's Labour council administration announced plans to withdraw all the organisation's grant funding. Tim met with CAB chief executive Shona Alexander and other staff, and spent time talking with people who have been helped by the CAB. Tim announced his grave concern at the prospect that Newcastle could soon be the only major city without a CAB, and vowed to work with Opposition Lib Dem councillors to identify alternative approaches which could help to keep the CAB open.
Tim also joined Lib Dem campaigners at Monument Metro station to highlight Lib Dem concerns at the poor performance of the Metro system at present, calling on Nexus and NECA to do more to improve reliability and secure investment in new rolling stock.
Following a round of media interviews, Tim joined Newcastle activists at Newcastle Civic Centre for an election campaign photo before paying a return visit to his former university.
Tim studied Politics at Newcastle University and was student union president in 1991. He joined current student president Dominic Fearon to take part in a packed “Talk To Tim” event in the Union Society’s History Room, where more than 150 students grilled him on issues ranging from student fees to Europe, international trade, and climate change. More than a few new student members were recruited in the process!
A hugely successful visit from Tim with some excellent coverage and some useful meetings. We look forward to welcoming Tim back to the North East in the near future – and we also hope to welcome Tom Brake MP to Newcastle later in February.