4 min read

Seagull Weekly Briefing 28/11

Council promises in tatters, marathon organiser falls apart in financial matters, departure for one of Sussex's most beloved batters and more
A picture of the wheel in Valley Gardens at night from up the hill
Source: The Brighton Seagull

Good morning, and welcome to an unusually sporty edition of The Brighton Seagull's Monday Briefing. Team Seagull took a ride on the Valley Gardens wheel pictured above on Saturday, certainly an experience we'd recommend wrapping up warm for, if you're doing it at night!

This edition of The Brighton Seagull is sponsored by Cybersyn, a friendly digital analytics consultancy based right here in Brighton.

News This Week

Sussex cricketer retires after 18 years with the team

A picture of the cricketer Luke Wright
Source: The Eternal Optimist

Cricket legend Luke Wright has retired after 18 years on the Sussex team.

The 37-year-old cricketer will take up a role as England men's selector for the England and Wales Cricket Board from March 2023.

In over 400 matches for Sussex, the former T20 captain accumulated over 16,000 runs and 30 centuries.

To this day, he is the highest scorer in T20 Blast history with 5026 runs for the Sharks, and was part of the Sussex teams that won the County Championship in 2006 and 2007.

He said:

A huge thank you to Sussex for the most incredible 19 seasons at the club. I am very proud of what I achieved individually and as a team during my time.

I would like to thank everyone connected to the club for the support I've had ever since moving here. I gave my everything and I hope that showed on the pitch.

I would also like to thank my friends and family for the love, support and sacrifices they gave to make my career possible.

And finally, my brother Ashley who has been my batting coach from start to finish.

As they say: once a Shark, always a Shark. #GOSBTS

London Marathon organisers possibly set to take over running of Brighton Marathon

A picture of The Seagull's technical director shortly after running the 10k that runs alongside the Brighton Marathon
Source: The Brighton Seagull

The council is urgently meeting this morning to discuss the London Marathon organiser taking over Brighton Marathon.

If approved, the organiser would be given a 3+2 year license for the marathon to operate from 2023.

In a report given to the councillors ahead of the meeting, it says:

The current organiser of the Brighton Marathon, Grounded Events (GEC), are going into administration. To preserve the monies paid for entry into the 2023 event Brighton and Hove City Council are seeking to licence a new operator who are willing to honour the existing entries from individuals and charities.

This would enable the city to apply for funding from the London Marathon Charitable Trust too.

Currently, Grounded Events (the current organiser of Brighton Marathon) owes approximately £150,000 to the council, according to the report.

The Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Urgency Sub-Committee will meet at 11am to discuss this.

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🖋 News in Brief 🖋

  • Metro Bank's Brighton branch is appealing for toys and games to support Rockinghorse Children's Charity, the fundraising arm of the Royal Alexandra Children's Hospital in Eastern Road. The charity relies entirely on support from people, groups, schools, companies and trusts, receiving no government funding, and raises money to provide medical equipment to help sick children in Sussex. The branch at 82 North Street is open for donations from 8.30am to 6pm Monday to Saturday, and 11am to 5pm on Sundays.
  • This week the Santa Bus will be at Wish/Portland/Boundary, Saltdean, Peacehaven, and Woodingdean. Track it here!
  • Just 124 days until the Volks returns! 🚃
If you have a story for Seagull, please get in touch with our editor at [email protected].

The Big One

Council rows back on landlord licensing promises

A picture of ACORN members protesting outside the Green Party office
Source: ACORN

What's happening? Brighton Council has gone back on promises it made to adopt a 'zero-tolerance' approach to landlords who break the law, and its target of implementing selective landlord licensing schemes by February 2023.

No good! Not at all! Brighton Council representatives met with ACORN, the renters union, last week to discuss commitments to implement landlord licensing schemes and a ‘zero-tolerance’ approach to rogue landlords.

What happened? Green councillors would not commit to changing their private rented sector enforcement policy to start issuing improvement notices, fines and prosecutions at the earliest opportunity. This comes after the Council voted unanimously to adopt a ‘zero-tolerance’ approach to landlords who break the law in November 2021.

Why did they meet with ACORN? The Brighton branch of ACORN has been campaigning for more support for renters since first meeting with Green councillors in 2020.

And about this illegal activity from landlords? Brighton council have only prosecuted 3 landlords in the past 10 years despite almost half of renters in the region having faced illegal activity from their landlord, according to an FOI request by ACORN back in November 2021.

An ACORN spokesperson said:

We left our meeting with Green councillors last week disappointed and outraged.

We met with Green councillors including council leaders Phelim Mac Cafferty last week hoping to get some clear commitments on how they would fulfill their promises. Instead we were told that landlord licensing may now take up to another 18 months before it is implemented in Brighton, and that officers were never actually working to a February 2023 target at all.

We were also told that they weren’t using a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to rule-breaking landlords as they don’t want to ‘punish landlords who don’t know the law’.

Now it seems Green councillors have led us up the garden path and had no intention of keeping to their commitments.  Renters in Brighton currently have almost no protection from criminal landlords, and given the seriousness and urgency of the renting crisis in Brighton we won’t accept this, and will escalate our campaign until the Green administration takes the necessary steps to resolve these issues.

What can I do if I'm having problems in a rented property? Consider joining ACORN, who campaign for change for renters.

That's all for this week—please subscribe, and forward to friends who might be interested!