STROUD District Green Party has hit out at what they call a “worrying lack of transparency in the awarding of government contracts."

The party has pointed towards the awarding of PPE contracts to the Stroud firm Platform-14 medical, which is owned by former Stroud town Councillor Steve Dechan.

Molly Scott Cato, who will be the candidate for Central Stroud division in the county council elections next May, said: “We support local businesses and wish Steve Dechan well.

"In pursuing the opportunity to win the contracts in question, he did only what any entrepreneur would do, and we can hope that the good fortunes of Platform-14 Medical will lead to the creation of new jobs in Stroud, which we would welcome.

“However, the apparent failure to follow standard procurement rules in the awarding of these contracts leaves a nasty taste in the mouth.

"It will inevitably tarnish the reputation of those contract winners who happen to have political connections with the government, no matter how well qualified they actually might be to carry out the work involved."

Platform-14 owner Steve Dechan said: "We have protected millions of people with our PPE including key front line NHS workers who have been our customers for years and they are delighted.

"We completed contracts on time, on budget and to the highest standards."