Graham Watson MEP
Liberal Democrat Member of the European Parliament for South West England and Gibraltar
A local champion with an international reputation
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Published on Saturday 21st April 2012
Euro-MP and President of the Western Counties Liberal Democrats Sir Graham Watson will open this weekend's Lib Dem Regional Spring Conference outlining how the South West is a 'leading light' in the UK's economic recovery.
Speaking in Trowbridge this morning, Sir Graham will comment on recent visits to several firms which are leading their field in innovation.
Watson will say:
'We have all the tools we need right here in the South West to keep our economy diverse and nimble enough to meet the challenge of post recession Britain.
''A landmark deal in Indonesia for 11 Airbus A330 aircraft will continue to safeguard the 4,500 aerospace jobs in Filton. The National Composites Centre just down the road from Airbus will deliver the next generation of engineering that will continue to ensure our region leads the way in the world of high tech composites manufacture. And projects such as the Plasma Arc in Swindon will deliver clean, efficient renewable energy whilst finding a solution to how to dispose of non-recyclable waste.''
Sir Graham will also talk about the upcoming local elections being held across the region:
''While many campaigners are gearing up for next years county elections, I am all too aware of the challenge many Councillors and candidates are facing in wards up for election this May. Again these are challenging times for our party whilst we make the difficult decisions to cleanup the mess the last Labour government left us in. We must continue to hold our resolve, campaigning on our strong local government record and the Liberal values that we all hold dear.''
And in a passing shot at Conservative Somerset County Council leader Ken Maddock, who stood down in an attempt to run for the Avon and Somerset Police Commissioner, Watson will say:
''But one thing is for sure, whoever Ken's replacement may be, don't expect any change. The Tories at County Hall have one agenda and one agenda only. Slash and burn. Until Liberal Democrats take back control this will not change.''