Author: Rick Dillon

Rick started out as a reporter on an evening newspaper at the age of 18, later graduating from Warwick University. He was an assistant chief sub-editor on the Daily Mirror during the Maxwell era, later working for the Sunday Telegraph. From 1998, as a food industry journalist, he covered both the organics boom and the dairy sector. Now retired and living in Hastings, he is one of the team producing Sussex Bylines.

A bigger splash: Sussex art show celebrates the sea

Rick Dillon

The new exhibition Seafaring, at Hastings Contemporary, features a wide variety of works by mainly British artists from 1820 to the present day. Rick Dillon describes the stunning range of paintings, from 19th-century shipwrecks by Romantic artists such as Géricault to contemporary canvases by Cecily Brown and Maggi Hambling.

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Political unity and division as May elections approach

Rick Dillon

The May local elections are being seen as the chance for voters to give their verdict on prime minister Boris Johnson and his Conservative government’s record of failing the young, the vulnerable and ordinary families. In Sussex there will be several key contests; but while parties go head to head, there have also been signs of greater compromise and partnership.

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Daddy’s Girl finally faces the music

Rick Dillon

Ghislaine Maxwell is likely to spend the rest of her life in jail after being found guilty of procuring underage girls for sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. Rick Dillon recalls the influence of her father, the crooked newspaper publisher Robert Maxwell. Jeffrey Epstein was not the first monster in Ghislaine Maxwell’s life. That ‘accolade’ goes to […]

Labour conference buried gem: Land laws reform to stop the “free-for-all”

Rick Dillon
Labour Party Shadow Secretary for Housing Lucy Powell speaking at the Labour Party conference in Brighton, Sept 2021

Forget Starmer’s speech, McDonald’s resignation and Rayner’s expletives, says Sussex Bylines writer Rick Dillon, who attended much of the Labour Party Conference in Brighton this week. Far more important were the under-reported land laws reform proposals, some put forward by the Hastings & Rye local party and passed enthusiastically by delegates, that would stop the developers’ planning free-for-all and could finally fix our nation’s housing crisis…

WHAT SUSSEX MEANS TO US

The magic of Sussex bonfires

Rick Dillon
Hastings Bonfire Night

“Here in Sussex, Bonfire Night isn’t just for children – and it never loses its magic” Hastings resident Rick Dillon explains why…

A win for rogue landlords as Tories block council licensing

Rick Dillon
Members of Acorn, the renters' union, protesting in Hove regarding landlord licensing

Lack of repairs creates misery for thousands in private rented accommodation. But getting councils to back a scheme that forces landlords to act is only the first step and, so far, applications to renew council licensing are being turned down by the Conservative Housing Minister Robert Jenrick.

Our Great British Seaside: a love affair celebrated in art

Rick Dillon

The British seaside is enjoying a renaissance this year due to Covid overseas travel curbs. Back in the day, far fewer holidaymakers went abroad, instead flocking to the nearest bit of coastline for fun regardless of sun, as can be seen in a new exhibition at Hastings Contemporary Seaside Modern featuring work by a range of 20th century artists span-ning 50 years, from the 1920s to the 1970s.

See, Support, Report: a safe, effective way to react to racism

Rick Dillon

Structural racism is endemic in our society, but it can be challenged. Sussex Bylines shines a light on the nature of unconscious bias, the racial inequalities highlighted by the Covid-19 pandemic and hears from Shamser Chohan, creative director of the social enterprise Communities Inc.

Only days left to protect our NHS from trade deal threats

Rick Dillon

Next week MPs will decide whether or not to back crucial Lords’ amendments to the government’s Trade Bill. If these amendments are not passed, the health service will be treated like any business – its profitable parts privatised and its data (our data) sold to the highest bidder.

All at sea over a Brexit deal – and fishermen may be left high and dry

Rick Dillon

The fishermen of Hastings once dreamt of a return to a Britain that charted its own course, freed from having to share its coastal waters and fishing opportunities with French, Spanish and Dutch rivals. It was a powerful message behind Brexit – symbolising ‘our island nation’, which once ruled the waves and now had to […]

Eviction threat recedes, but anxious winter ahead

Rick Dillon

Thousands of renters will have breathed a sigh of relief as the government further extended the deadline that protects them from summary eviction. As well as the new deadline of 20 September, there is a six-month ban on most evictions taking place until the end of March 2021. So those who would have risked losing […]

On a beach in Sussex, ‘migrant’ myths exposed

Rick Dillon

The recent hot weather brought with it calm seas, and the calm seas brought with them an increase in the number of refugees crossing the Channel in small boats. To look at the reaction from the government and the right-wing press, one could be forgiven for thinking this was a massive invasion. What we actually […]