Page last updated at 12:10 GMT, Thursday, 3 April 2008 13:10 UK

Lib Dems launch councils campaign

Nick Clegg
Mr Clegg promised to give people a say in local government

The Lib Dems have claimed to be the "practical" party of local government at the launch of their campaign for council elections in England and Wales.

Leader Nick Clegg said the party's record was a "success story - quality services, and value for money".

Speaking at the campaign launch in Sheffield, he accused Labour of failing on crime and the Tories of having "no stomach" for addressing green issues.

The Lib Dems are defending about 700 seats in the 1 May elections.

'Value for money'

The party currently controls 29 local authorities across Britain, putting it third behind the Conservatives and Labour.

For Mr Clegg, the local elections represent a first test at the ballot box since he became Lib Dem leader last December.

He said the party had come up with local solutions to problems including housing, crime and the environment.

Mr Clegg added: "The Liberal Democrat record in local government is a success story - quality services, and value for money.

"And we are ready to apply the lessons that we have learned to councils throughout this country."

He said: "We don't promise to fix or solve every problem, but we do promise to give people a say, to give them the opportunity to fix things for themselves."

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