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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 January 2007, 16:27 GMT
Voters' views on how Wales is run
Betsan Powys
BBC Wales political editor

David Burton
Firefighter David Burton is usually a 'tactical voter'
Earlier this month we appealed for people to come forward to tell us how Wales should be run, ahead of May's elections to the national assembly.

The first 150 contenders for a group known as the Wales 60 have now thrown their hats into the ring - but we are still looking for more.

The final 60 could be asked to do interviews, write web diaries or record their own video phone messages for the BBC Wales' website and programmes.

First-time voters, workers, parents, pensioners and students are among those willing to sign up so far.

Firefighter David Burton, of Hensol in the Vale of Glamorgan told us: "The big interest for me was when I logged on to the website and saw that you (BBC Wales) were looking for 60 people basically to represent the country and ask the questions that need to be asked."

Mr Burton added that he hoped more people would scrutinise their politicians in the run-up to the elections on 3 May.

He said he usually voted tactically and his number one issue with politicians was accountability.

Allyson Westwood-Howell and daughter Niamh
The only way you will be heard is if you speak out and say what you feel
Allyson Westwood-Howell

"I want to put them (politicians) on the spot to say: 'What have you done, what will you do?' and get them on record as saying it so the next time round we can say: 'Well you said that and you didn't do it.'"

Another applicant to the Wales 60 is Allyson Westwood-Howell, a mother of six girls from Pentwyn in Cardiff - and one of them, Niamh, has autism.

She told us it was important to her to exercise her right to vote, something her father, a former county councillor, had taught her.

"So often politicans, I feel, are more interested in what they feel will get them votes, they don't necessarily listen to what everyone has to say.

"Everyone has an opinion and I think that the only way you will be heard is if you speak out and say what you feel - it's not enough just to say this is not fair or this is not right."

The Wales 60, which will be finalised by the end of February, has attracted potential contributors from all over the country.

Dewi Parry, a 32-year-old IT manager from Caernarfon, is a father-of-two with another on the way.

He has only voted once - but wants to get involved in the Wales 60.

And Owain Williams, a first-year student at Oxford University from Whitchurch, Cardiff, said: "I'm hoping that before these assembly elections that politicians will listen a bit more to what young people have to say especially about things like education."

If you would like to be part of BBC coverage of the Welsh assembly elections please email:


Include a few brief details about yourself - your age, what you do and where in Wales you live, together with your comments on the election campaign ahead.

Or call the BBC Information Line on 08700 100 775, and leave your details.

"You can phone us, email us or even send a video clip"


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