Steve Webb said: "I have known and worked closely with Claire for many years and she has been at the centre of all we have been doing with local people. I am delighted to be passing on the baton to someone who is as energetic and committed to the community as Claire Young. I will be giving her my full support in the urgent work to be done to help our country and community."
Claire Young said: "Steve has been a rock for our community and brought improvements in the lives of so many people locally and nationally. I am humbled by the confidence people have placed in me. Over the years I have met so many lovely people working together for our community I am really looking forward to my changed role in that work. There is a lot to be done, giving people control over their lives, helping those who are struggling to keep their heads above water, finding new ways to avoid the effects of the terrible cuts Tories have been imposing on our community. "
She has already launched her first major campaign, asking people to 'Tell Claire' what they most want done to help them - "It may be a local problem, it may be a service that needs improving, or it may be getting some aspect of the state off people's backs. People want control over their own lives, but with access to support when they need it. The new prime minister has promised to give people control, but many people will remember Mrs Thatcher's nice words when she was elected, and she did nothing to provide the support people want in times of trouble. Only Liberal Democrats are fully committed to that balance of giving people control over their own lives, but making sure there is support available when you need it"
Claire added: "The party locally has been going from strength to strength recently, with a massive influx of members, particularly young people determined to use their energy to help build the future for them and their families. The party now has more members than at any time in over a decade"
Claire Young is a very familiar face in our area. She has been the Liberal Democrat Councillor for Westerleigh Ward since 2007, and is Deputy Leader for the Liberal Democrats on South Gloucestershire Council. She lives locally in Coalpit Heath with her family.