Making Greater Brighton genuinely greater

It’s been nearly a year since I took on the role of chairman of the Greater Brighton Economic Board which means it is a good time to look back and reflect on what has been delivered in the last 12 months. When I took up the role on the rotating annual basis, I made clear that the time was right...
Posted On 19 Apr 2018

Hove MP spells out Syrian dilemma

The last fortnight has been really tough. I’ve been watching and reading the news from Syria like most people but as Parliament has been in recess I’ve missed the chance to track down experts, consult colleagues and hunt down ministers to get answers to the many questions swirling around my...
Posted On 16 Apr 2018

Opinion – Brighton and Hove Conservatives offer another lesson on education

Without giving it much thought, a consistent thread runs through my life – education. Starting with school, of course, college in London was followed by a PhD at Brighton Polytechnic. After the Royal Navy, as an officer instructing “stuff”, I spent 28 years teaching the maintenance of flight...

It’s not just pride at stake when Brighton and Hove Albion travel to Crystal Palace

Regular readers, and my followers on Twitter, will know that one of my personal highlights during my time as council leader was to be able to play a part in the civic reception and celebration of Brighton and Hove Albion’s promotion to the Premier League last summer. Tomorrow the Albion take on...

Opinion – Bring home the body of heroic former Brighton schoolgirl

Former Brighton schoolgirl Anna Campbell died in a Turkish air strike on Thursday 15 March in Afrin in Syria. She was 26. Anna, from Lewes, had travelled to Syria to join the Kurdish fight against ISIS because she was horrified by reports of their atrocities against the Syrian people and...
Posted On 07 Apr 2018

We should work to overcome prejudice, corrosive voices and old divisions

Like many others, I feel that in recent years there has been a re-emergence of old divisions, historic fears and community tensions which we’d hoped had long been left behind. Artificial divisions based on borders, on religion, on ethnicity have seemingly been brought back into focus,...

Labour is threatening Hove Library yet again, say Greens

Less than two years since the successful campaign to save Hove Library and plans are in motion from the Labour council to remove many of its bookshelves and instal an office on the ground floor. While these changes may appear to be minor, after the alterations, only three of the original bays...

International Women’s Day gives cause to celebrate but reminders of what is at risk

As we celebrate International Women’s Day this week, it is important to point out that 100 years after some women won the right to vote, key gains for women’s equality now look set to be jeopardised. Public sector cuts are harming progress for women. As women form two thirds of public sector...

Brighton and Hove council budget includes cost of political hypocrisy

Brighton and Hove must be fed up to the back teeth with politicians who say one thing in opposition and another thing in power. This year Brighton and Hove City Council has endured some of the worst examples. In 2014 Labour’s outgoing leader Warren Morgan brought a “no confidence” motion...

Work to support social care for adults continues despite big unresolved questions about funding

It is without a doubt that local authorities have been put under enormous pressure by continued government cuts to adult social care. Demand for support continues to increase in both the volume and complexity of people’s need against a background of significant reductions in local government...

A word on Oxfam – by Hove MP and former aid worker Peter Kyle

I’ve spoken a lot in the media these past few days because there’s a lot I wanted to say about aid and development. Most of you know that I was an aid worker myself for almost a decade, and then completed a doctorate on development at Sussex University. It’s something a care a lot about. From...
Posted On 13 Feb 2018

Opinion – 100 years of suffrage but there’s more to do

Today we marked 100 years since some women were given the right to vote and stand in parliamentary elections. This was a huge milestone that women suffered and died for. I am proud to have become the 419th female MP but we need to ensure that more women are able to take part in our democracy...

Opinion – Government must give us freedom and funding to build homes for Brighton and Hove

Few argue that Brighton and Hove needs more housing, the debate is usually about where to build it and how affordable it is. Another issue of course is how to pay for it. We have committed to build or at least start 500 new council homes by 2020 and we are on the way to doing that. Brooke Mead...

Opinion – Time to rethink how we protect our environment

Twenty seven years ago I marched with my father against a toxic waste incinerator being built by manufacturing firm Dupont. Among the many speeches, I can remember my epiphany: without taking action to change behaviour in giant corporations, our planet will not be rescued from climate change....

Opinion – Labour scaremongering ignores the real lesson: children are being better educated under the Conservatives

A couple of years ago a Labour Shadow Education Spokesperson claimed that the Conservative government had created a “vacuum” in education in an attempt to paint an image of an education system in decay. This was designed to scare parents about their children’s futures. The Conservative Party...
Posted On 19 Jan 2018

Opinion – Concrete signs of progress on seafront show confidence in Brighton and Hove

Regular readers of this column will know of my affection for our seafront and my belief that it is a key part of our economy and what makes Brighton and Hove the great place it is. One of our prime locations is the Aquarium Terraces opposite the Palace Pier at the gateway to Madeira Drive, home...

Opinion – Shaping a future for homes, jobs and growth in Brighton and Hove

How do we secure an economic future for Brighton and Hove, the city region and the south east? How do we create the environment in which businesses can grow? How do we build enough affordable homes so that the people working in those businesses can afford to live here? And how do we ensure our...

Opinion – Are Greens the only party protecting Brighton and Hove from fracking?

In the face of thousands of objections, this week West Sussex county councillors voted to allow “investigative drilling” near Balcombe village. Fossil-fuel firm Cuadrilla can now conduct invasive tests in the hunt for oil and gas reserves, laying the ground for fracking at the doorstep of...

Opinion – From budget battles to crowdfunding success and from building new homes to Albion’s promotion, it’s been quite a year!

In keeping with a chilly January, the year started with us announcing that the majority of parking charges in Brighton and Hove would be frozen for another year. Some of our target 500 new council homes were completed in Portslade and we put forward proposals for “Rail South”,...

Opinion – A colourful take on the political landscape in Brighton and Hove

For those of you becoming slightly irritated by the left-right, capitalism-socialism, May-Corbyn arguments, a note from me, as leader of the Conservatives in Brighton and Hove, regarding my personal views may be useful. There are two types of politician who can bring most to the current...
Posted On 24 Dec 2017