We’re working together in Greater Brighton but there’s so much more to do

The last 12 months have been a time of real change for Greater Brighton – a year when there have been visible signs of what working together can deliver for our residents and also a year which has seen the region grow in size, stature and confidence. When I joined the board four years ago, it...

We need stability

As Conservatives in the next 10 days we will have a new leader of our party and this will be our third in three years. In 12 days, the country will have its third Prime Minister in three years too. We are fortunate enough to have two high-calibre candidates to choose from who have the support...
Posted On 12 Jul 2019

Community spirit and the circular economy in Brighton and Hove

I never fail to be amazed at the community spirit that is ever present in our city. No matter where you go or which part of Brighton and Hove you live in, there is a wealth of people involved in different community projects and volunteering roles. These range from Friends groups looking after...

The World Transformed festival is coming to town this year – and it will be awesome

How many times have you heard someone say that they are not interested in politics? I have heard that sentiment expressed so many times that I couldn’t possibly have been expected to have kept count. The underlying understanding of politics in which that lack of interest is couched involves the...

Residents deserve a voice on water privatisation

Thirty years ago this week, the Conservative government privatised the country’s water supply, handing over public ownership of our water to private companies. The results have been disastrous. It’s estimated that since privatisation, our water bills have increased by 40 per cent in real terms....

Tips for table staff in Brighton and Hove

Summer is finally here. Tourists and visitors are arriving in force every sunny weekend. By the beach, the bars and cafés are overflowing with people – everyone is looking to have fun with family and friends and make the most of their time off. It is a positive vibe. Eating al fresco,...

The Labour Party is gearing up to become the party of climate justice

At the May local election, the Labour Party pledged to set up a Citizens’ Assembly in the first few months of the new administration, to help set out our city’s path to carbon neutrality by 2030. To many, that seemed like nothing but a cynical ploy to stem the then-palpable Green tide at the...

Hove MP’s proposal could still prevent calamity of ‘no deal’ Brexit

I voted Leave in the EU referendum – for a number of different reasons. I’m becoming increasingly worried, however, that we now face the possibility of a relatively small number of our population, ie, the Tory party membership, deciding the fate of Brexit and the future of the country via their...

A service which needs to meet the needs of children and families

I make no apologies for raising the same topic again because “home to school transport” is an issue where some of our most vulnerable children rely on the council to provide a safe, secure and fit for purpose transport which caters for the individual needs of that child and gives peace of mind...
Posted On 28 Jun 2019

A tourist-eye view of Brighton and Hove

When you live in Brighton and Hove, having friends or family to stay can be the perfect excuse to be a tourist in your home town. For me and Steve, having our 16-year old nephew stop over meant a chance to rediscover places we’d not been to for a while or go along to things we’d been meaning to...

The fight against academisation isn’t simply about performance; it is about protecting our communities

The fight against academisation isn’t simply about performance; it is about protecting our communities One only needs to type in “academisation of schools” into Google to catch a glimpse of the scale of the fight against academisation across Britain. Communities in Liverpool, Essex, Derby,...

We need truly affordable housing in Brighton and Hove

When asked last week by the BBC Politics Show what I would ask the potential candidates for Number 10 to do for the people of Brighton and Hove, I had quite a list. To have back the 40 per cent cut to local government funding would help us to provide the services we need for local people. To...

Celebrating human rights in Refugee Week

Celebrating human rights in Refugee Week This week is Refugee Week – an important point in the calendar to celebrate human rights and to understand the work to welcome people fleeing some of the world’s most horrific circumstances. Brighton and Hove has many wonderful initiatives supporting...

Possability People has been saved for now, but Crowdfunders are no way to fund vital services

Charity, that is, sharing what you have with other people who need it, is an unadulterated good in a world in which many are in need. But, while charity is good and should be encouraged, it cannot be the way we run society. Nobody’s wellbeing should depend on the good graces of another....

What we can learn standing side by side with our veterans

This year I feel very honoured to have had the opportunity to attend the D-Day 75 commemorations and combine this with being the city’s armed forces champion. I’ve visited Normandy before on many occasions in the company of three good friends who were D-Day veterans. This was my first trip...

How much does the council really care?

We call ourselves a “City of Sanctuary” but there at least three areas in which I believe we are failing. We see increases in homelessness and rough sleeping despite millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money being pumped into trying to resolve this very sad but important issue. We do not see any...
Posted On 14 Jun 2019

The diversity that makes us the city we are

It was an honour to make my first speech as leader of Brighton and Hove City Council at the Iftar dinner. During the Islamic month of Ramadan, Muslims fast between dawn and dusk. Iftar is the evening meal when Muslims break the fast just after sunset. It is a happy occasion to be shared with...

The Brighton and Hove left has a few lessons to learn

The Brighton and Hove left has a few lessons to learn It is easy, these days, to forget that just two years ago, a minority Labour council would have preferred to work with the Tory group, rather than with the Greens. So much has changed in such a short time. The city now has a council leader...

Brighton and Hove runs on hi-vis heroes

Most Saturdays you can find me volunteering alongside other “hi-vis heroes” at our parkrun in East Brighton Park. This is just one of six local parkruns hosting over 1,000 runners, managed week in, week out by a team of around 100 volunteers. But we are not the only hi-vis heroes in the city....

Greens will fight academy plans tooth and nail

This week we heard the news that the government is intent on pushing Moulsecoomb Primary School to become an academy. Evidence tells us we must challenge this move. Analysis from the Institute of Education has revealed two thirds of academy chains perform below average for disadvantaged pupils....