Dave Wetzel Goes Green

Former Vice-Chair of Transport for London leaves Labour for the Green Party


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Dave Wetzel, former Vice-Chair of Transport for London, Labour Leader of Hounslow Council in the 1990s and the last Chair of the Greater London Council's Transport Committee in the 1980s, has left Labour for the Green Party.

Mr Wetzel is an activist with extensive experience in transport, community action and land reform. He currently consults and speaks around the world on environmental and land use matters especially how authorities can use their tax systems to make better use of urban sites and reduce urban sprawl.

Dave Wetzel, Daniel Goldsmith and Tony Firkins
Dave Wetzel, Daniel Goldsmith and Tony Firkins

Mr Wetzel said: "I was first elected a Hounslow Councillor back in 1964 at the age of 21 and will always be indebted to the Labour Party and West London voters for giving me the opportunity to serve my community in a number of ways. However, after 50 years membership of the Labour Party, joining the Green Party has been like a breath of fresh air.

"The member involvement and open democracy in the Green Party is intoxicating - as are its policies of creating a fair economy that works for all by making the minimum wage a Living Wage and introducing a basic income, and creating a sustainable and stable society by tackling climate change and investing in renewables. The Green Party's policies are at the cutting edge of what we need in this society and they are about building real political change - change that works for the public. That's why my heart is now firmly with the Greens."

Daniel Goldsmith, Green Party Candidate for Brentford and Isleworth, said: "Dave Wetzel is a passionate, wise and kind politician, with an unblemished record of public service at the highest level of local government.

"He is a great asset to Hounslow Green Party, and has given us sage advice on strategy and fund raising. He has a very positive vision for the future of Hounslow Green Party. We are very fortunate to have him in our Party.Having such an experienced politician join us gives us confidence that we are on the right track".

For eight years Mr Wetzel was the first Vice-Chair of Transport for London where he helped introduce cycling improvements, the London Congestion Charge and the many new policies for improving bus services that led to a doubling of bus passengers.

As the Labour Leader of Hounslow Council from 1987 to 1991 Dave initiated Hounslow Urban Farm at Bedfont, Chiswick swimming pool, equal opportunity policies, and several new bus services. When Chair of the GLC's Transport Committee between 1981 and 1986 Dave led the team that initiated London Transport's Travelcard, station improvements, the Docklands Light Railway, enabled Thames Link, introduced the London Lorry Ban, improved cycling, funded Dial-a-Ride and Taxicard for people with disabilities and made London's roads safer.

The declared candidates for the Brentford and Isleworth seat in the General Election are Joseph Bourke (Liberal Democrat), Ruth Cadbury (Labour), Daniel Goldsmith (Green), Richard Hendron (UKIP) and Mary Macleod (Conservative).

April 15, 2015

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