Plaid Cymru gains another councillor in Penmaenmawr

Mayor crosses the floor from Labour, dubbing Starmer 'Tory tribute act'

The mayor of Penmaenmawr has joined Plaid Cymru after quitting Labour over its rightward drift. Steven Consterdine, who works in the hospitality industry as an owner operator of two venues in the Conwy area, said he was encouraged by the response he'd had within Plaid Cymru and the welcome the party had given him and others who have recently quit Labour's ranks.

Steven Consterdine, who grew up in the quarry village of Penmaenmawr, said: "For many months, I’d been finding it increasingly difficult to remain a member of a Labour Party that no longer holds the same core values as myself and thousands of other members across the UK. After many months of seeing grassroots members, their views and wishes, being marginalised - while the leader systematically abandons his own promises as well as long-held party values, to become a Tory tribute act - I cancelled my membership in December 2023. 

"At that point, I truly believed that I no longer had a political home, where I could belong and where my voice would be heard, understood and valued. I was aware that one of my local county councillors, Cathy Augustine, had recently crossed the floor from Labour to Plaid Cymru. We hold similar principles and beliefs and she offered me the opportunity to meet with some local members and national officers to discuss the concerns that, for me, were a barrier to joining Plaid Cymru – particularly the approach to the Welsh language and to independence. 

"I appreciated the time given to go through my concerns and, during the course of a number of meetings, I realised that the values and ideals of Plaid Cymru are aligned with my own, most of all the core principles that underpin a sustainable future for Wales. And this is reflected in policy commitments regarding sustainability and prosperity for all. Most of all it’s about ensuring that Wales takes its rightful place as an equal partner in the UK as a minimum but fundamentally has the potential to be independent, to secure a better future for all people living in Wales.

“Events since then have confirmed to me that it was the correct decision – the dubious running of the Welsh Labour leadership contest that has imposed on Wales a first minister already tainted by acceptance of donations from an unsavoury source, while the UK Shadow Secretary for Health lays out plans for further privatisation of our NHS and the leader of the opposition still refuses to overturn the cruel two-child cap, pushing more families – and particularly children – into poverty.”

Last November, Cathy Augustine, councillor representing Penmaenmawr Ward on Conwy County Borough Council, crossed the floor to Plaid Cymru saying: "In the 18 months since I was elected, the gap between my long-held values and the direction and policies of the Labour Party both in London and Cardiff, has been increasing and is now too wide for me to consider the Labour Party as my political home.” 

Cathy joined dozens of other Labour councillors across the UK who are leaving the party in droves as Starmer’s leadership overturns their beliefs in peace, equalities, workers' rights and ensuring that no-one in our communities is left behind. 

She added: “We are now delighted to welcome Steven Consterdine, Mayor of Penmaenmawr, as a member of Plaid Cymru. I’m so pleased that a friend and colleague has joined me in making the decision to become part of the Plaid Cymru family – a party that more closely reflects our shared values of community, equality and fairness for all. Steven’s values, energy and local insights will be a huge asset and I’m personally really pleased that we’ll be once again working and campaigning from the same platform.”

Catrin Wager, Plaid Cymru's parliamentary candidate for the new Bangor Aberconwy seat said: "It’s a real honour to have Steven join Cathy as new Plaid Cymru councillors in Penmaenmawr. They are both people of principle, who genuinely want to make a positive difference to people’s lives locally.  This news reflects the growing momentum behind Plaid Cymru in the new constituency of Bangor Aberconwy. 

“On the doorstep, people are telling me that they are fed up with the Tories and want a different kind of politics, but there is frustration with Labour, and a feeling that they are just offering more of the same.  Neither party offer ambition, or vision for better, they only seem concerned with being in power. 

"I’ve had enough of seeing communities in decline, residents choosing between heating and eating, and a third of our children growing up in poverty. Things could be so much better for all our communities. Plaid Cymru believe this isn’t as good as it gets.


“We need strong voices that stand up for our people and communities, whoever is in government, which is what Plaid Cymru are offering.  Our ambition isn’t to be in power in Westminster, it’s to get the best we can for the people of Wales, wherever they were born, and whichever language they speak.   


“Cathy and Steven are incredible champions for their community, and  I look forward to working with them for the benefit of the people of Bangor Aberconwy.  As team Plaid Cymru we are committed to doing our best to create positive and lasting change, for our communities here in north-west Wales.”

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  • Catrin Gruffudd
    published this page in News 2024-04-22 12:30:12 +0100

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