Section: Sussex

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Knepp Estate: who controls and benefits from rewilding?

Ross McNally

Rewilding is all the rage yet there remain key fatal flaws in the model. First is the fragmented nature of rewilding in the UK. Second, it remains largely the domain of a handful of privileged people. Could greater democratic oversight help repair fragmentation?

Refugees and Sovereignty – Two birds with one stone

Tom Serpell

Taking back control of our borders was, for good or ill, a cornerstone of Brexit, fetishised by those who tell Johnson what to do. As the UK government weeps crocodile tears over deaths at sea of asylum seekers driven to desperate measures to reach their place of safety, it refuses to enact the simplest and most decent of solutions to the problem: to create safe routes to this country.

UPDATED

Infilling at Barcombe: a bridge too far!

Ginny Smith

Are disused railway bridges liabilities or assets? It’s a question highlighted by plans to infill a bridge in Barcombe with concrete, plans which provoked a vigorous and, so far, successful campaign to halt what local campaigners describe as vandalism.

There’s no place like home: Nationality, borders and statelessness

Mo Kanjilal

Mo Kanjilal was born in the UK and has lived all her life here. The Nationality and Borders Bill, clause 9 sends the message that certain citizens, despite being born and brought up in the UK and having no other home, remain migrants in this country. Their citizenship, and therefore all their rights, are precarious and contingent.

Boris Johnson: the party’s over

Vivienne Griffiths
Photo of House of Commons with text overlaid: PM apologises in House of Commons for offence caused by aides joking about Christmas party.

Over the past few weeks a number of scandals have rocked Westminster and Boris Johnson’s position as prime minister. Vivienne Griffiths examines the fallout of the ongoing furore and its impact on the Conservative government and its leader.

Humbug banished as Lewes’ shoppers break food banks record

Ginny Foster

The awesome organisation of Mark Perryman and the Lewes Labour Party has resulted in all records being broken at this year’s Christmas Foodbank Collection.  As usual, there was an all-day rota of collectors outside Tesco, Aldi and Waitrose.  Bonfire societies, sports clubs choirs, political parties, yoga groups, panto casts and hundreds more willing individuals all […]

Schools and Covid-19: the government is letting us down

Sarah Nield

Covid-19 case numbers are once again rising in Brighton and Hove, and now we also have the uncertainties of a new Covid variant – Omicron – to contend with. On the plus side, almost two years into this pandemic, some things about this virus are no longer a mystery. We know how it spreads. We […]

Blood on her hands

Ross McNally

Under Home Secretary Priti Patel, what was once the policy of fringe British National Party crackpots is now at the heart of government. Her response to the deaths of 27 refugees at sea is playing politics with people’s lives.

NEW WRITER

How Sussex can rediscover its wild side…

Ross McNally

Greater species diversity would transform the South Downs National Park from ‘pretty’ sheep-grazing fields into a vibrant landscape for all kinds of wildlife. Bring back the bison and let nature take charge again, urges zoologist Ross McNally.

Shout out! The RNLI volunteer team keeping you safe at sea

Anna Scott

The RNLI lifeboat at Newhaven is a part of a hugely popular, publicly funded charity that inspires loyalty and devotion from its volunteers, who selflessly dedicate their lives to saving the lives of others. How and why do they do it? This is their story.

Who will police the police?

Allegra Chapman
Downing Street police guards seen through the railings

Since Sarah Everard was murdered in March by a serving police officer, 81 women have been killed in the UK at the hands of men. How are women supposed to feel safe on our streets if the very people whose primary job is to protect us are instead disregarding, mocking or killing us? Can women trust the police? And perhaps more importantly, should we?

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…

TOXIC SHOCK

For the birds: Brexit’s latest shock, a toxic threat to our water system

Ginny Smith & Rick Dillon
a yellowhammer bird in a tree

The safety of our water systems is now threatened due to the shortage of HGV drivers who deliver the chemicals needed to decontaminate wastewater. This is therefore a problem stemming directly from the consequences of Brexit – and one which, among many others, was predicted in the government’s own Operation Yellowhammer report, which laid out disaster contingency plans in the event of a no-deal Brexit, which has now become reality.

NEW WRITER

Build Britain Better: why our housing industry needs urgent modernisation

Joe Harmston
Dreamscape painting of a tudor house in a bubble with a man and umbrella on top and pink clouds in the background

“Perhaps it is a tall ambition for Britain’s house builders, but why settle for a sentimental evocation of the past when you could aspire to an exciting journey into the future with all its possibilities?” New Sussex Bylines writer Joe Hamston, who is himself a house builder, makes the case for the urgent modernisation of our housing industry…

Recipe for success: how hands-on volunteers battle food poverty

Ali Ghanimi
Fare share volunteer loading donated surplus onions in a crate into a van for distribution to the community

Sussex food partnerships are at the forefront of finding long-term solutions to the growing problem of food insecurity. Affordable food projects, community supermarkets and organisations who take surplus fresh produce from local farms and turn it into soups, are all playing their part in relieving the food poverty that exists in all of our communities…

The unkindest cut – real life stories

Sussex Bylines
Woman looking at the "Keep the lifeline" petition on her smart phone

We invited Sussex Bylines readers to share their personal experiences of how the government’s planned Universal Credit cut will affect them. We have already received some courageous responses that make for sobering – and in some cases, heartbreaking – reading…

UPDATED

The unkindest cut of all

Ginny Smith
Tories Foodbank Soup cans mural in London by artist Georgie

Despite dire predictions and warnings, Johnson’s government seems determined to cut the £20 a week “uplift” payments for Universal Credit recipients. Yet as critics of the move point out, this cut is not only cruel and ill-timed, but doesn’t even make economic sense…

UPDATE ON COP26

Giving voice to climate activists – and the coat arrives!

Ginny Smith
Barbara Teal wearing the Coat of Hopes before any patches have been added, leading a group in song on Newhaven Beach

From Sussex to Scotland: Coat of Hopes just embarked on an inclusive, inspiring, and uniquely creative 500-mile, 60-day pilgrimage to the COP26 Climate Change Conference in Glasgow. And at its centre is a community-made patchwork coat that is transformed as it travels…