Why backing local firms is plain common sense

Is local business important? It should be to all of us who are looking to be employed locally and who want to keep our local businesses thriving in our city. My concern is there seems to be a trend under the Labour-run administration of Brighton and Hove City Council to outsource many services...
Posted On 19 Jan 2020

More than just food for thought as Shelter Hall work nears completion

I am really excited that after two years of construction work, the new Shelter Hall is emerging from behind the hoardings. The original building has been demolished and the historic King’s Road arches and upper promenade have been strengthened to prevent the seafront road from collapse. I am...

Green solutions for Waterhall and Hollingbury – and a missed opportunity

Back in June 2019, Green councillors were told that the “time was up” on the lease for two council-owned assets in the city – the Hollingbury and Waterhall golf courses. They are currently operated by company MyTime Active on behalf of the council. Due to a decline in membership, the company...

The fight for youth services isn’t over

Youth services have borne the brunt of 10 years of Conservative government hard. Across the country you see the same picture almost everywhere – a shell of what the youth service used to be. Figures released last year from the YMCA indicated that funding has been cut 69 per cent since 2010 –...

2020: time for Tory cuts to end

Happy New Year from the Green group of councillors! The general election means this is my first column since November. Given the election results, we must be prepared for continuing destructive Conservative welfare “reform” and further austerity that will hit the most marginalised hardes...

We need the government to care about care

As 2020 gets into full swing at the council, the budget-setting process draws nearer. Local authorities must deliver balanced budgets but with funding from central government cut over the last decade it gets harder for us to provide the essential services our residents expect. One of the...

Christmas is NOT the most wonderful time of the year for rough sleepers

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” sang Andy Williams. “There’ll be parties for hosting, marshmallows for toasting and caroling out in the snow.” But for people who are homeless, especially those living on the streets, it is anything but that. It is a time when they are reminded of...

Spread Christmas cheer – it’s a great time to donate or volunteer

As we head into the last weekend before Christmas, if you are anything like me, life becomes a whirlwind, rushing about trying to get everything done in time. Every year something disappears or falls off the list. Last year, I couldn’t find the wrapping paper. It came to light in January,...

Brighton and Hove is the perfect place to kick off the Green New Deal

Largely lost in the flurry of election news last week was the European Commission announcement of its European Green Deal. It has unfortunately fallen short of the mark. It’s not comprehensive or quick enough. My work in Brussels is focused around a Green New Deal – from the committees that I...

Your chance to have a say about graffiti

Graffiti is a huge problem in Brighton and Hove. Tagging scars our buildings, bus shelters, walls, play parks, bridges, telephone and electricity boxes – in fact there’s hardly a surface that graffiti vandals leave untouched. Many residents feel it’s an issue that the council can and should...

Build a better future by conserving Brighton’s past – and restoring the Madeira Terraces

We need to save one of Brighton and Hove’s most precious heritage assets – the Madeira Terraces – and I have a plan to do it. Brighton and Hove City Council should raise £20 million in six months and start work on all 147 arches within one year. The Labour council should stop the dither and...
Posted On 09 Dec 2019

Lessons in the politics of education

Empowering young people, giving them schools capable of recognising and developing their unique talents and an economy that welcomes them whatever their pathway into our complex world of work … this is the mission that drove me to co-found two youth charities, get involved in improving local...
Posted On 08 Dec 2019

Why ideology should be left at the school gate

Education always features prominently in election campaigns and rightly so. My interest, however, goes far beyond my role as a Conservative Parliamentary Candidate. As the father of three small children, it is deeply personal. I want to be sure that, when they each start school, they will able...

Credit where credit is due?

Since 2010, Conservative governments have taken several vital steps to protect the environment. They have ratified the Paris Agreement, cut single-use plastic bags by 86 per cent through the plastic bag charge and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 25 per cent. They have also generated record...

We can only tackle racial harassment by working together

Everyone has the right to feel safe and live a peaceful life. Unfortunately, this is not the case for everyone in our city. Here in Brighton and Hove, where we are a City of Sanctuary, the Racial Harassment Forum (RHF) has developed strong working relationships with Sussex Police, Brighton and...

Sculptor selected for Brighton suffragette statue

Mary Clarke was the first suffragette to give her life for women’s right to vote but there is no public memorial to her anywhere in the country. Brighton, where she lived and worked, has few memorials to women and no statues of women other than of Queen Victoria. The Mary Clarke Statue Appeal...
Posted On 03 Dec 2019

Why our local schools must be allowed to tell the truth about cuts

Some may have greeted the Government’s recent announcement of a huge £14 billion increase in school funding with delight. Anti-cuts campaigners and schools themselves are distinctly underwhelmed. All over Brighton and Hove, schools are still displaying banners telling of the cuts they’ve...

Why our local schools must be allowed to tell the truth about cuts

Some may have greeted the government’s recent announcement of a huge £14 billion increase in school funding with delight. Anti-cuts campaigners and schools themselves are distinctly underwhelmed. All over Brighton and Hove, schools are still displaying banners telling of the cuts they’ve...
Posted On 01 Dec 2019

A true blue wants to show homophobia the red card

I had high hopes that the culture of homophobia in football was about to be effectively challenged a couple of years ago when players demonstrated their support for LGBT+ players and fans by wearing rainbow coloured boot laces. I’m truly saddened that progress has not been nearly as fast or as...
Posted On 30 Nov 2019

Why we need an emergency response to the climate crisis

Today, once again, people are taking to our streets to send a clear message: we need action now to avert the worst effects of spiralling climate change. Just last September it was estimated that seven million people across the world took part in a strike for climate action. In Brighton and...