Former Leeds MP’s comeback bid

Paul Truswell.
Paul Truswell.
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A former Leeds MP is bidding to make a return to politics in the city’s forthcoming local elections.

Paul Truswell spent 13 years as Labour MP for Pudsey but decided not to contest the 2010 General Election due to ill health.

His decision followed a car crash in 2009 which left him with chest and abdominal injuries.

Now, though, Mr Truswell has been announced as the Labour candidate for the Middleton Park ward in next month’s Leeds City Council elections.

Mr Truswell spent 15 years working as a city councillor in Leeds before becoming an MP.

Mr Truswell told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “Once I was given the all-clear from a health issue caused by the crash I wanted to put my skills and experience back to work for the community.

“Middleton Park Branch Labour Party were looking for a candidate to replace Geoff Driver, who is standing down after 35 years as a councillor.

“They interviewed a number of candidates and I was delighted to be selected.

“I was born and brought up on an estate like those in Middleton and Belle Isle, and it really feels like going back to my roots.”

Labour heads into May 3’s Leeds poll with 56 seats, while the Conservatives have 21, Liberal Democrats 16, Morley Borough Independents five and Greens two.

Leeds City Council’s Liberal Democrat group, meanwhile, has paid tribute to four of its councillors who are standing down at this year’s elections.

Couns Graham Kirkland, Alan Taylor, Penny Ewens and Ben Chastney have clocked up 59 years of service between them.

Coun Taylor is the city’s current Lord Mayor but his year of office will end in May.

Coun Stewart Golton, leader of the Liberal Democrat group on the council, said: “We will be very sorry to lose these councillors.”

* The other candidates for the council’s Middleton Park ward are Sadie Fisher (Lib Dem), James McFarland (Con) and Kevin Meeson (BNP).