The Wythenshawe and Sale East by-election of February 2014, caused by the death of its MP Paul Goggins,will be called soon, and deadlines for nominations will come next week.
Here are four very good reasons why my colleagues in the Green Party up in Greater Manchester need to put a candidate forward for this by-election:
1. Standing here allows us to maintain a national profile. For us to present ourselves as Britain's real alternative to not only the ConDems and Labour but also to UKIP, we need to stand in as many Westminster by-elections as possible to give voters the chance to vote Green and for us to be seen as a serious player in British politics. We have a future both inside and outside Brighton.
2. The Barton Moss fracking site is nearby. We Greens need to make sure that this important issue is heard during the short by-election campaign, and make it clear that fracking is not only not a viable solution to Britain's energy needs but also extremely harmful to people and planet, as fracking stories from the USA show.
3. The Manchester City area, which includes Wythenshawe, has many active Greens. Even though it has been a while since the Greens held a council seat in Manchester, we are quite active there and need to show our commitment to helping the people of Manchester.
4. We will help offer an anti-privatisation, pro-people solution. The issues of recent and upcoming privatisations must be highlighted in this by-election, and Labour who are very likely to win it will ultimately do nothing in the long-term to renationalise services like public transport (both rail and otherwise) or reverse austerity measures, or properly fight for a living wage.