The Welsh Liberal Democrat Assembly Member for Montgomeryshire, MIck Bates has announced that he will not be seeking re-election at the next Assembly elections in 2011.
Mr. Bates will be 63 at those elections. He has said that he has made the decision purely for family reasons and so as to enjoy a happy retirement with his wife Buddug, who is retiring from her job as a teacher this summer.
Mick is widely respected in Montgomeryshire as a hard-working constituency AM, who is viewed by many as a ‘man of the people’. However, he will also be missed in the Assembly where his passion and energy has been evident in the work he has done on rural issues and on alternative energy.
Mick was a founding member of the influential and very successful National Assembly Sustainable Energy Group (NASEG) and has worked with the industry and with other AMs over a number of years to change the approach of both the Welsh and Westminster Governments to these issues.
He was also responsible for the reintroduction of free school milk for key stage one pupils and has pioneered a number of important initiatives to support and improve the farming industry. He has done valuable work in the field of affordable housing and has been instrumental in promoting carbon neutral housing and Community Land Trusts.
With two more years to go before he steps down we are confident that Mick will be able to add to that list.