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Green leader eyes national role

PUBLISHED: 16:00 01 August 2008 | UPDATED: 12:17 07 May 2010

Norwich Green Party leader Adrian Ramsay - who could become deputy leader of the national party.

Norwich Green Party leader Adrian Ramsay - who could become deputy leader of the national party.

Norwich's green credentials are set for another boost after it emerged Green Party coordinator Adrian Ramsay is almost certain to become the party's first national deputy leader.

Norwich's green credentials are set for another boost after it emerged Green Party coordinator Adrian Ramsay is almost certain to become the party's first national deputy leader.

Mr Ramsay, 26, who leads the Norwich City Council Green Party, the party's biggest council group in the country, is in line for the national number two post after it was revealed he is the only candidate standing.

The Norwich-born politician is fighting a joint campaign for leadership of the party in England and Wales with South East England MEP Caroline Lucas, the firm favourite for the top job.

Party members have until September 5 to vote for either Mr Ramsay or to reopen nominations in the deputy leadership contest.

Ms Lucas must also claim the leadership title over London member Ashley Gunstock for Mr Ramsay to be named deputy, because Green Party rules state the leader and deputy must be of different genders.

The position would be another impressive first for Mr Ramsay after he became the first Green leader of the opposition on a British council with 13 seats - just two behind Labour.

He is also planning to stand for MP in the Norwich South constituency against former home secretary Charles Clarke, and says his election could boost his chances of a win.

Mr Ramsay said: “I am surprised that no one else is standing but I am delighted with all the support I have received from members in Norwich and around the country.

“There is a real determination in the party to take a big step forward over the next couple of years and in particular to elect the first Green MPs at the next general election.

“Local election results show that the Norwich South constituency is clearly one of the best prospects in the country for achieving this breakthrough.

“At a time of rising fuel prices and increases in the cost of living, Green policies have a lot to offer the British public.

“We support a free insulation scheme to help tackle fuel poverty, large-scale investment in clean renewable energy and the development of cheap, reliable public transport. The Green Party is also promoting an increased minimum wage of £7.50 per hour.”

Early this month Green Party members across the country will be sent ballot papers which need to be returned by September 5. Results will be announced on September 6 and the speeches will be delivered on September 8.

The elections are the first held as the leader and deputy positions are new posts in the party.

If Mr Ramsay wins it will be another boost to the city's green reputation. A poll by Men's Health Magazine last October rated the city second greenest in the country. Previous polls have put Norwich in the top spot.

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