General Election 2017: Local teacher stands for Greens in Welwyn Hatfield

PUBLISHED: 15:29 05 May 2017 | UPDATED: 15:44 05 May 2017

The Green Party candidate Christianne Sayers.

The Green Party candidate Christianne Sayers.

Danny Loo Photography 2017

A Welwyn Hatfield teacher has thrown her hat into the ring as a General Election candidate, fighting the seat for the Green Party.

Christianne Sayers, 47, teaches computer science at Sir Frederic Osborn School, Welwyn Garden City, and formerly taught maths at Onslow St Audrey’s School in Hatfield, where she lives.

When the Welwyn Hatfield Times suggested that her local reputation might be an electoral advantage, she joked: “That depends how many detentions I gave out.”

Her political priorities include, not surprisingly, climate change and air pollution, but also education and gender equality.

Mrs Sayers, who former pupils may remember as Miss Lyons, is studying for a masters degree in sustainability and adaptation.

She has recently returned from Kenya, where the devastating effects of climate change were an everyday topic of conversation.

She said: “Everyone is talking about it. They have had a drought for three years. Now everyone there has to buy water.

“We will soon notice climate change. We are getting stranger weather.”

When the Welwyn Hatfield Times suggested air pollution was not a serious problem in the constituency, she claimed it had very recently caused her breathing problems.

She pointed out central London, where dangerous smog hit a record level in January, is only 20 miles away, and air pollution can travel rapidly.

Although her party hold just one Westminster seat, Mrs Sayers insists she can win Welwyn Hatfield on June 8 by targeting previous non-voters, and the Greens can have a strong voice in the next parliament.

Mrs Sayers, who was brought up on the south coast but lives in The Ryde, Hatfield, said: “I think we have every chance to win. If you look at the people who have not been voting in previous elections, there are more than enough people to win this seat.

“Nationally, the Green Party is getting stronger and stronger. There is a Green surge. Greens are getting seats in councils, and we can get several MPs.”

Mrs Sayers has a son aged 29 in Southampton, a 21-year-old daughter who has recently moved to Spain, and a granddaughter.

The other declared candidates are Conservative Grant Shapps, Labour’s Anawar Miah, and Lib Dem Nigel Quinton.

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