A life after politics - 'It's a pity not to still be here'

29th October 2010 at 01:00

After 11 years as member of the National Assembly for Wales, Jenny Randerson feels she has achieved most of what she wanted to do in Cardiff Bay.

"I'm of an age where I wonder if I will still have the same enthusiasm for all this in five years' time," she says. "The election has re-inspired me and sometimes I think it will be a pity not to still be here, but ultimately it's the right decision.

"It's a 247 job that can only be done with real enthusiasm. I think it's a good idea to hand on when you have still got all that and you would still miss it a lot."

As culture minister in the LabourLib Dem coalition of 2000-03, Ms Randerson was instrumental in the development of Iaith Pawb, the action plan for a bilingual Wales, and also played a major part in championing the building of the Millennium Centre in Cardiff Bay.

But her proudest achievement came as a backbencher, when she won the ballot for the first private member's bill in Wales, which promoted healthy eating in schools.

She says: "Approached in the right way it shows a backbencher can make a difference. I did that in response to people who complained to me about school food - they had healthy standards in England but we didn't in Wales."

Jenny Randerson CV

1970s: After attending Bedford College, London University, moves to Cardiff; becomes lecturer at Cardiff Tertiary College

1983: Elected to Cardiff Council

1994-99: Leader of the opposition

1999: Assembly Member for Cardiff Central in the first election for the National Assembly

2000-03: Minister for culture, sport and the Welsh language in the LabourLib Dem coalition government

2008: Lib Dem economy, education and transport spokeswoman

2009: Wins ballot for Assembly's first private member's bill on healthy school meals.

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