Conservative deputy leader to stand down in May

Posted On 02 Feb 2023 at 12:10 am

Conservative councillor Robert Nemeth is to stand down at the local elections in May.

Councillor Nemeth, deputy leader of the Conservative group on Brighton and Hove City Council, represents Wish ward where he was first elected in 2015 and re-elected four years ago.

The 42-year-old father of three was also the Tory candidate in the 2019 general election when Labour MP Peter Kyle held the seat with a majority of more than 17,000.

Councillor Nemeth won his council seat from Labour in 2015, with 2,102 votes, topping the poll alongside his Conservative colleague Garry Peltzer-Dunn.

When the pair were re-elected in 2019, Councillor Nemeth topped the poll again, with 1,531 votes

Councillor Peltzer-Dunn died in September, more than 50 years after he was first elected, and a by-election followed in December.

The Labour candidate Bella Sankey won the seat with 1,519 votes while the Conservatives trailed in second place with 756 votes.

Councillor Nemeth, who keeps bees and develops properties, has been visibly active in his ward, with the Secret Garden, the Friends of Hove Lagoon and Hove Beach Hut Association. He has worked with others to revive Boundary Road.

Councillor Nemeth has also been active on council committees, persuading all political parties to back a policy to include bee bricks in more new buildings. Other councils have since followed suit.

He has been a leading opposition member on policy-making committees, most recently the council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee.

But he has faced a number of complaints, notably over comments he made after the Daily Mail published a story about four Brighton schools a year ago.

The Mail said that four primary schools in Brighton had banned the words “mum” and “dad” in favour of “grown ups” – a story denied by the schools and the council.

His selection as the party’s parliamentary candidate in Hove is also believed to have led the group’s former leader Councillor Tony Janio to leave the party. He sits as an independent.

The Conservatives have yet to announce who will stand in his place in May.

Yesterday, the former Conservative deputy leader of the council, Vanessa Brown, 77, said that she planned to stand down in May after 28 years’ service as a councillor.

  1. Jon Reply

    Councillors don’t get paid much and what with social media and divisive politics I’m not surprised so many are standing down.
    Still Councillor Nemeth will have his photo collection of overflowing bins to remember his time

    • Benjamin Reply

      I’ve heard stories of the torrent of abuse they get on a daily basis, people really need to learn to be kind in their words, it is far more effective. As the saying goes, you get more bees with honey.

  2. Hendrik Reply

    A great loss to the community. He is one of the few councillors who spoke out against the nonsense perpetuated on Brighton and Hove by the Greens, with the pathetic connivance of Labour.

  3. Car Delenda Est Reply

    Thank God this pathological liar is going, he proved that there needs to be more oversight for councillors.
    In the end he was too looney even for the local Tories.

  4. Nathan Adler Reply

    A really great councilor, (despite his politics). Happy to get involved and a very visible local presence. many other councilors could learn from his example.

  5. Valerie Reply

    I feel sad for Wish Ward losing both Garry & now Robert who is SURELY not leaving politics ! He has been an endergetic & committed example of what the public shoukd expect from their Councillors – over and above political differences.

  6. Christopher Hawtree Reply

    Cllr Nemeth will of course be particularly remembered for his great help in the campaign to prevent Labour’s second attempt to close down Hove’s Carnegie Library.

    After this he faced a Trial brought cllr Morgan, and I was glad to appear as clle Nemeth’s Expert Witness that long and increasingly surreal afternoon in the Town Hall a few years ago.

    • F. Jama Reply

      As most things involving Chris Hawtree end up being surreal, this doesnt surprise me in the least!

      • Christopher Hawtree Reply

        Thanks! I chuckled at that.

  7. Alihaa Jacobs Reply

    Robert Nemeth was a divisive man who will not be missed. His community involvement never added up to very much other than massive self-cpublicisation. He actually never helped anybody or do anything. We asked him about putting road humps on our street. Instead, he just waffled on about wheelie bins because – hey ho – speed humps were something he was against. Every cause he promoted were whatever aligned to his rightwing agenda. And as for those bee bricks – a total waste of time. I will be celebrating the demise of this appalling politician.

  8. fed-up with brighton politics Reply

    I always remember with Mr Nemeth, who at one time wrote very good articles about the historical buildings of the city and their architectural/heritage merit (before he was a councillor), that he suddenly approved of something far lesser and horrible that didn’t square with his alleged previous principles. I mentioned it on some forum or another and he had a ‘right go’ at me (water off a duck’s back to me, but it showed him up in his true colours). Conservative voters in his ward may be disappointed that he’s standing down, but he won’t be missed by anyone else in the city.

  9. Staks Reply

    Not my local councillor or my political preference but this councillor seems to be active, actively ‘green’, supporting locals and standing up to BHCC council nonsense.

  10. Patcham Guy Reply

    Another nail in Brighton’s coffin.

  11. ChrisC Reply

    “Retiring” because it’s slightly better than being defeated in the May elections?

    Let’s face it the Tories are toxic at the moment and have ho hope in taking control of the council and are going to lose seats.

  12. Valerie Reply

    Venomous comments here…I do not vote Labour because abuse passes for thinking in too many of its activists

  13. Patcham Guy Reply

    If the Conservatives are toxic, where does that leave Labour and the Greens, who along with Comrade Sturgeon cannot give a definition of the word ‘woman’ ie she is not a man.

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