Meet your Cardiff North candidates

What promises will they break in government?


Cardiff North is one of the most marginal seats in the whole of the UK, being won in 2010 by Conservative Jonathan Evans by a majority of just 194 votes.

He was the first Conservative to be elected to represent the constituency since the Labour landslide in 1997 although, up until that point, Cardiff North had always been a Tory seat aside from one Labour victory in 1966.

Few seats in the UK are a simple Conservative/Labour split like Cardiff North.

The constituency is largely middle class, mixed with students from Cardiff University, as the Heath campus and Talybont halls of residence fall within its electoral boundaries.

The Welsh Conservatives have campaigned hard to retain Cardiff North in comparison to Labour’s more relaxed efforts – based out of a belief that they will win the seat as a result of national swing.

Cuts to public services in Cardiff North, as a result of the Labour council’s budget reductions, have led to the bizarre circumstance of the Labour candidate, Mari Williams, campaigning against her own party’s decisions in government.

But what is the story behind each candidate standing for election, and what have they promised to the Welsh electorate?

Craig Williams – Conservative

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Craig lives in Cardiff with his wife, he has a young son called Charlie and a Welsh spring spaniel, Winston. He also has a keen interest in rugby, and used to play regularly. As well as being a Councillor, Craig is a governor at local primary and secondary schools, and also serves as a non executive director of Cardiff Bus. Whilst sitting on the City Council Craig has fought against local cuts and filed a motion of no confidence in the Council’s leadership. If elected he would seek to keep crime rates low and create more private sector jobs.

Key policies:

– Finishing the Eastern Bay Link road to alleviate parking and congestion issues
– Protecting the green belt at the foot of Caerphilly Mountain and giving local residents a say regarding future developments

Chance of winning: 34%

Our prediction: 2nd

Vote for Craig if: You want to protect Cardiff North’s public services

Mari Williams – Labour

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From Rhiwbina and a pupil at Whitchurch High School Mari was, until very recently, living and working in London. She studied at UCL before going into teaching and becoming a deputy head at a comprehensive in Hackney. After her selection to stand in the general election in Cardiff North Mari moved back to Rhiwbina, but not before taking a year out to cycle around the world. She firmly believes in education as a root out of poverty.

Key policies:

– Energy price freeze to reform the energy market and replace Ofgem
– Raising the national minimum wage to £8

Swing needed: +0.4%

Chance of winning: 66%

Our prediction: 1st

Vote for Mari if: You like cycling and lycra

Ethan Wilkinson – UKIP

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Ethan is 24 years old and studies Italian and Spanish at Cardiff University. He is married and a father of one (soon to be two). He has done volunteer work in Italy, studied in Spain and will graduate in the summer. Previously an intern under Conservative MP for the Vale of Glamorgan Alun Cairns, Ethan is now standing for UKIP. As a Mormon, he does not believe in gay marriage.

Key policies:

– Leaving the EU to save £55m/day in membership fees, and putting this money toward the preservation of local public services
– Electrification of local train lines

Swing needed: +35.1%

Chance of winning: 0%

Our prediction: 3rd

Vote for Ethan if: You believe in traditional marriage

Ruth Osner – Green
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Ruth lives in Cardiff North with her husband and two children. In spite of suffering severe dyslexia Ruth has completed the first level of an Open University degree. In addition to a part time job at a local supermarket Ruth volunteers as a receptionist at a non-profit organisation helping people in recovery from drug, alcohol or gambling addictions, as well as occasionally volunteering with Good Neighbours for Cardiff North by shopping for local residents on her bicycle. If elected she intends to campaign against tax evasion, as well as planting more trees in Cardiff North to break up wind tunnels.

Key policies:

– Replacing diesel buses with cleaner hybrid models.
– Preventing fracking and constructing more small renewable energy projects like the Radyr hydro-electric dam project

Swing needed: +36.7%

Chance of winning: 0%

Our prediction: 4th

Vote for Ruth if: You want to preserve the environment

Elin Walker Jones – Plaid Cymru

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Originally from Carmarthenshire and living in Bangor with her spouse and four children, Elin studied at Cardiff University and has worked in the NHS in a variety of locations across Wales. She is currently a consultant clinical psychologist with children and young people with learning disabilities and autism. She is a school governor and in her spare time enjoys cooking and keeping fit and healthy. If successful in the general election she would campaign on disability and green issues.

Key policies:

– Achieving the same deal for Wales on funding and powers as Scotland
– Introducing 50,000 jobs through more public contracts for Welsh companies

Swing needed: +34.2%

Chance of winning: 0%

Our prediction: 5th

Vote for Elin if: You want greater devolution for Wales

Elizabeth Clark – Liberal Democrat

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Born in North Road, Elizabeth grew up in Cardiff – her first job was at Lloyds Bank in Whitchurch. After graduating from Reading University Elizabeth qualified as a human resource manager at the University of South Wales and as a teacher at Cardiff Metropolitan University. She was the first woman to be given the hereditary freedom of the city of Cardiff. That being said, any rights to graze her sheep in Heath Park have now ended.

Key policies:

– Furthering income tax cuts to £1,200
– Campaigning to save Cardiff North’s libraries

Swing needed: +19.2%

Chance of winning: 0%

Our prediction: 6th

Vote for Elizabeth if: You don’t remember 2010