Labour choose local man to challenge Nick Clegg

Have your say

THE head of a South Yorkshire environmental scheme has been chosen by Labour to take on Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg at the next General Election.

Oliver Coppard, manager of the Dearne Valley Eco-Vision Project, will contest the Sheffield Hallam constituency where Labour came third in 2010 and Mr Clegg secured a majority of more than 15,000.

The backlash faced by Mr Clegg since the Liberal Democrats entered into a coalition with the Conservatives is likely to mean the Sheffield Hallam race will attract considerable attention as well as a large number of single issue and minor party candidates.

Mr Coppard said: “This is two years of my life and I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t think I could win.

“There is no love lost for Nick Clegg in Sheffield Hallam, It might be a large majority but there is a lot of anger and I don’t think there will be a shortage of issues to fight this election on.”

Mr Coppard, who has previously stood in local elections for Labour, volunteered in Barack Obama’s last presidential campaign and plans to use the lessons he learned in Sheffield.

He said: “We need to campaign differently, not just put leaflets through doors. We need to ask questions, not just tell people answers.”

Mr Coppard, who has previously worked advising Labour MPs, was raised in the Sheffield Hallam constituency, attending High Storrs and Silverdale Schools.