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In a move that has caught many by surprise, more than a third of Brighton and Hove City Council’s current councillors will not be running for re-election in the upcoming May election. With 21 out of 53 councillors announcing their decision to step down, including nine from the Green Party, six from Labour, and three from the Conservative Party, there will be a significant shake-up in the political landscape of Brighton and Hove.


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The Green Party: Loss of Key Players

Among the nine Green Party councillors who will not be standing for re-election are some of the party’s most influential figures. Lizzie Deane, the current Mayor of the city, and Elaine Hills, who co-chairs the council’s environment, transport, and sustainability committee, will both be stepping down. Additionally, Marianna Ebel, Martin Osborne, and David Gibson will also not be running. The husband-and-wife councillors for Regency, Tom Druitt and Alex Phillips, had already announced their decision not to stand for re-election last year, after Cllr Phillips was overpaid childcare expenses by the council.

The Labour Party: Loss of Experience

The Labour Party will also be losing some of its most experienced councillors, with six stepping down. Among them are former council leaders Nancy Platts and Dan Yates, as well as the party’s group co-leaders Carmen Appich and John Allcock.

Conservative Party and Independents: Change of Guard

Meanwhile, the Conservative Party will be losing three councillors, including former council leader Mary Mears. Two independent councillors, Nichole Brennan and Nicholas Childs, will also be stepping down. Tony Janio, who quit the Conservative Party shortly after his election win in 2019, recently rejoined the Tories but will not stand for re-election.

May Election: The Big Test

In the upcoming May election, fifty-four seats on the council will be contested. The list of retiring councillors includes those who have made significant contributions to the city, such as Mary Mears, who resigned after serving for three decades, and Amy Heley, who won a national award for Young Councillor of the Year in 2021. The councillors who will replace them will have to work hard to fill their shoes and serve the city’s interests to the best of their abilities.

Challenges Ahead

The upcoming election will be crucial for the future of Brighton and Hove, as the city faces a range of challenges. These include affordable housing, sustainable transport, climate change, and the post-pandemic recovery. The new councillors will have to work together to address these issues and make the city a better place for its residents.

Renewal and Opportunity

The fact that so many councillors are stepping down may indicate a desire for change and renewal in the council. It also presents an opportunity for new faces and fresh perspectives to enter local politics and bring new ideas to the table.

Participate in the Democratic Process

As the election approaches, it is important for voters to inform themselves about the candidates and their policies and to exercise their right to vote. By participating in the democratic process, they can help shape the future of their city and hold their elected representatives accountable for their actions.


The Brighton and Hove local elections are set to be one of the most significant in recent years, with a significant proportion of incumbent councillors stepping down. The changing political landscape presents both challenges and opportunities for the city, and it will be up to the new councillors to work together to address the issues facing Brighton and Hove and to serve the city’s interests to the best of their abilities. As voters, it is our responsibility to inform ourselves about the candidates and their policies and to participate in the democratic process. By doing so, we can help shape the future of our city and hold our elected representatives accountable for their actions.

In the face of the challenges that lie ahead, it is important to remember that change is an opportunity for growth and renewal. While the departure of many experienced councillors may seem daunting, it also provides an opportunity for new voices to be heard and for fresh perspectives to be brought to the table. The upcoming local elections are an opportunity for us to embrace change and to work towards building a brighter future for Brighton and Hove.

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Hi I'm Oliver Smith, I would say that I take great pride in my work as a journalist and strive to produce high-quality, impactful stories that make a difference. With more than eight years of experience under my belt, I am passionate about uncovering the truth and shining a light on issues that matter.


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