TACKLING the government on sewage in rivers, discounted bus travel for teenagers, safe cycle routes and more trees are key Liberal Democrat proposals.

MP Wera Hobhouse launched the LibDems’ manifesto for Somerset saying: “These elections are an opportunity to send a message to the Conservatives who are dumping sewage into our rivers, have slapped taxes onto households who are struggling with a cost-of-living crisis and have done nothing to tackle devastating ambulance waiting times.

“I'm fully behind the LibDems' manifesto to take control of the council and plant up to 150,000 trees per year.

"This will have a huge impact and takes huge steps towards tackling the climate emergency and reducing flooding.

"Offering discounted bus travel for teenagers is another great initiative and will help young people paying over £1,000 on their bus to college.

“Only the LibDems in Somerset have the strength to beat the Conservatives in this election. This manifesto has the ideas to put the heart back into Somerset."

The manifesto commits to support carers, retain a county farms estate and deliver thousands of low and zero carbon council and social homes.

Other policies include growing Somerset’s economy through its competitive advantages in food production, medical sciences and hydrographics, aeronautics and renewable energy.

Mendip district councillor Adam Boyden said: “The choice in this election will be between a Conservative or a LibDem-run Somerset council.

“LibDem Mendip district, one of the three Somerset districts we run, has made real progress addressing the climate challenge through a dedicated member of the Cabinet, a Climate Emergency Fund for local eco projects, planting over 7,000 trees, expanding Frome’s Missing Links and multi-user paths, planning guidance to make new homes sustainable, a ‘no idling’ policy, and monitoring and reporting of our carbon emissions.

"Voting for any party other than the LibDems in this election will put this progress at real risk and only serve the Conservatives who have failed on climate and brought the county council close to bankruptcy."

County councillor Mike Rigby said: “The Conservative county council have failed to deliver any cycling improvements on the dangerous road between Taunton and Wellington.

"We’ve committed to making a cycle route happen there and in all the most dangerous blackspots across Somerset.

"Drivers are getting a raw deal with appallingly planned roadworks leading to massive congestion and funding for road maintenance slashed.

"We’re positive about how our transport plans can deliver for the planet and for Somerset’s road users."