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Bill to step down as MP after four terms; Veteran politician to spend more time with wife, Gill.

Byline: By Steve Evans

BILL OLNER is quitting as Nuneaton's Labour MP.

He will not be seeking reelection at the next general election because he says he wants to spend "quality time" with his wife, Gill.

Mr Olner, who will be 65 in May, has spent more than 40 years in politics at various levels - and feels the time is right to stand down.

He said: "My reason for not standing again as Nuneaton's MP is that after a lifetime of politics, always with the support of my wonderful wife Gill, I believe that it is now time to spend some real quality time together.

"I have every intention of staying in Nuneaton and will continue to work for local people as I have always done. I will support whoever the Labour Party chooses as the candidate to succeed me and I know the people of Nuneaton will show that person the same support they have shown me over many years."

Mr Olner said: "It has been a tremendous honour and pleasure to represent the people of this town for what will be over 40 years when the next election comes around and I would like to express the gratitude of Gill and myself to everyone for the kindness they have shown us over this time."

Atherstone-born Mr Olner, a former apprentice at Armstrong Siddeley Motors in Coventry, has been heavily involved in the trade union movement since leaving Atherstone High School at the age of 15.

He joined the old Nuneaton Borough Council in 1969 and then became the leader of the council after its merger with Bedworth in 1974.

He was mayor of Nuneaton and Bedworth in 1987-88.

He was elected Nuneaton's MP in 1992, defeating Conservative stalwart Lew Stevens, and is the town's longest-serving MP in modern times, having been elected for four parliamentary terms.

CAPTION(S):

LONG SERVICE... MP Bill Olner has enjoyed 40 years in politics.
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Mar 27, 2007
Words:321
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