New Library for Sovereign Harbour

Sovereign Ward campaigner Kathy Ballard, has been approached by a resident about setting up a community library. He has 8,000 books to donate to the new library. Kathy says, “We were wondering if there would be any interest in setting up a community library for Sovereign and would appreciate your views. Please email me at [email protected].

County Council Profits From New Parking Charges

Eastbourne’s businesses and residents are angry that East Sussex County Council chose to impose steep display parking and on-street parking permit increases when the town was emerging from an extended lockdown due to Covid19.  At the last County Council meeting the Tory majority dismissed Liberal Democrat pleas that the increases be postponed until the New Year when, hopefully, the Town will have recovered from the effects of Covid19.

ESCC increased on-street parking permits and display parking charges throughout Eastbourne at the beginning of July - display parking charges have risen between 20p and £1.90. An Eastbourne resident who was paying £25 for an annual On-Street Parking Permit for the first car at the residence will have to pay as much as £95.

Kathy Ballard says “It is incomprehensible that East Sussex County Council should increase the charges at this time.  The increases are wrapped up as helping the Environment when they are in fact lucrative income generation measures for East Sussex County Council”.

Stephen backs Kathy for Sovereign Ward

Popular former MP, Stephen Lloyd, is backing Kathy Ballard to win Sovereign Ward in the upcoming county elections. He says: “I am delighted to be supporting Kathy for next May. She’s already working hard across the Ward. From the Admirals Estate to the Harbour, local residents are recognising that she’ll always put them first ahead of party politics.  It’s time for a positive change in Sovereign Ward, and I believe Kathy is the right person to deliver that change.” 

Update from Eastbourne Borough Council Leader David Tutt on 4-Sep-20

In what has been the strangest of years, things are changing again.  Children have returned to school; more businesses have reopened and a number of restaurants are continuing to offer discounts in order to entice us back to eating out.  All of these things suggest that life is returning to the way it was pre-lockdown.  Whilst this might all feel good, we need to remember that the threat of Covid-19 has not gone away.  We have been fortunate that locally the rate of infection has remained below the national average, but there is still no room for complacency.  In common with many other countries, the number of infections in the UK has once again been increasing.  In order to address this, several areas of the north of England have seen local lockdowns imposed.  Such action can have a major impact upon a local economy seeking to recover from months of inactivity.  So, for both the sake of our health and the Eastbourne economy, let’s ensure that we observe the CV19 guidelines and avoid the need for another lockdown here.

Last Saturday I was delighted to visit Embrace, which has just reopened.  This local charity does so much to support children with special needs and their families.  They have ambitious plans for expansion of their services over the next five years and I wish them every success.

One of the consequences of Brexit is that any EU national living in the UK has to apply for ‘Settled Status’ no matter how many years they have lived here.  The only exception to this is if you have ‘indefinite leave to remain’ but even with this it is worth applying for ‘settled status’ as this will give you additional rights.   If you need to apply and have yet to register, but are uncertain of how to go about it, there is help available.  You can call the Council’s Customer First number 01323 410000, they will take your details and get someone to ring you back and arrange an appointment for a one to one meeting at one of the EU Settled Status support sessions. 

Stay safe.

David Tutt

Update from Eastbourne Borough Council Leader David Tutt on 30-Aug-20

In a year when virtually every local event has been cancelled, it is good to know that there is one which is still going to go ahead.  This is the walking festival, which will take place between 18th to 27th September.  There are a vast range of walks to choose from - ranging from long walks over the downs, to take in the magnificent views, to a more sedate walk around Helen Gardens.  This year’s event promises to be the best ever and takes in ‘Car Free Day’ on the 22nd September, a good reason for leaving the car at home and taking a walk.  Full details of the festival can be found on the Visit Eastbourne website at:  Booking is required as numbers are strictly limited in order to observe the Covid-19 guidelines. For many, after months of staying indoors, this provides a great opportunity to get out in the fresh air, take some exercise and learn more about our local environment. 

More good news for those who have been bitten by the walking bug is that ‘Beat the Street’ is back.  This popular physical activity game gets underway on the 16th September. Running for seven weeks, participants are issued with fobs which they scan under ‘beat boxes’ which are attached to lampposts.  There are 72 ‘beat boxes’ spaced half a mile apart.  The greater distance you travel, the more points you can earn for your school or community team.  This fun way to exercise might give you a chance to visit parts of the town you have not seen before.  If you are interested in taking part you can find more information at

This is the time of year that the Council conducts the annual electoral registration canvass.  If you have not already been contacted, you should be in the near future.  The propose of this canvass is to ensure that you are on the electoral roll and entitled to vote in elections.  Please help by filling this in with details of all of the adults in your household and return it to the Council – Thank you.

Stay safe!

David Tutt

Update from Eastbourne Borough Council Leader David Tutt


The short break that I have just enjoyed helped to remind me of just how close we are to so much beautiful countryside.  In what could have been a rehearsal for the walking festival in September, I have walked over several areas of this, the eastern end of the South Downs.  So much open space, fantastic views and totally uncrowded.

Whilst I was on leave, I knew that I would be returning to tackle some very serious matters, not least of which the ongoing challenges of CV19. The break gave me time to consider the even greater issues facing our future.  Issues such as sustainability.

Eastbourne Borough Council has already set the objective of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 and are working alongside environmental groups in order to achieve this target, but sustainability, which is so important for future generations, is much more than that.  Sustainability means finding ways to meet our current needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs.  So, whatever we take from the earth’s resources must be capable of being replaced and whatever we create, we need to be able to dispose of without polluting the planet.

To achieve this will require major changes in the ways that we live, many of which we might find uncomfortable.  For example, we urgently need to tackle our use of plastic.  On several occasions I have joined with others to clean our beaches and seen the volume of plastic washed up on our shores.  Since the 1950s more than 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic waste have been produced, making plastic one of the largest synthetic materials on the planet.  if there is to be a future for our children and grandchildren, this simply cannot continue.

The Covid pandemic has been tragic and brought grief to many, but it has also led to certain lifestyle changes which can contribute towards sustainability.   Less commuting, more home working and video conferencing.  Staycation holidays and less foreign travel are not really painful changes for most of us, but if continued will help to protect the future.

Stay safe.

David Tutt



Lib Dems force County Council roadworks U-turn


Conservative-run East Sussex County Council scheduled roadworks in Lower Meads for one of the busiest and sunniest weeks of the year in August. Businesses on Carlisle Road were appalled when they found out it would mean closing the whole road for two weeks!

The plans would have directly affected 34 local businesses.

After being contacted by one business owner who would have been affected, the Eastbourne Liberal Democrats - led by Cllr David Tutt - persuaded the county council to reschedule the work for a quieter time later in the year.

Meads campaigner and County Council candidate Peter Diplock said: “The plans of the County Council beggar belief – closing the road 34 businesses rely on for trade, on one of the busiest weeks of the year in such glorious weather, and after these businesses have been so badly affected by Covid? You couldn’t make it up! Happily, by ensuring we were in touch with the needs of businesses in Meads, the Lib Dems were able to force the County Council to think again.”

PROFILE: Meads ward campaigner - Councillor Peter Diplock

Hello! For those of you that don’t know me I’m Peter Diplock and will be meeting many of you over the next few months ahead of the County Council elections next year. I was born locally in what was St Mary’s hospital, and have a large extended family in the town. I’ve had a varied career, working in Emergency Planning for the Cabinet Office, being a teacher, and in a record shop (my favourite!) I’ve also more recently worked in both Adult Social Care and Children’s Services and know only too well the challenges faced by those who need help from an often impenetrable system.

I’m involved locally with Living Streets, a nationwide charity that promotes active travel and have taken demands for the British Lung Foundation’s campaign for a new Clean Air Act to parliament. Alongside being a Borough councillor I work locally in part of the NHS, and have seen first-hand the impact of County cuts and consistent underfunding for special educational needs children and adult social care. I want to work with colleagues of any political persuasion to improve the services from the County Council.

If you would like to get in touch with me to talk about local issues or support my campaign in any way, do get in touch, I look forward to hearing from you.

East Sussex County Council faces shortfall of £31 million


At an East Sussex County Council cabinet meeting it came to light that the Council currently faces a budget deficit of £31 million. The Council has not yet said how they will find this money.

Ratton ward campaigner, Councillor Helen Burton, said: "When money has been tight in the past, the first thing that the Conservative controlled council does is take funding from the vulnerable and reduce essential services. Now, more than ever, I worry about what the council’s response will be to this unprecedented cash crisis. Liberal Democrats must have a voice at the table to make sure that social support is available for the people who need it."

PROFILE: Ratton ward campaigner Councillor Helen Burton


For those of you who don’t know me, I thought I would start by introducing myself. I’m Helen Burton and have been selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate in Ratton for the East Sussex County Council elections next year, and as a local resident I am looking forward to becoming a strong voice for our ward.

I am passionate about our Eastbourne community and as a Green Liberal Democrat, a keen environmentalist. I worked for ESCC children’s services and was a foster parent for many years, so I have a good understanding of social issues and am an excellent advocate for Liberal Democrat values. I want to work with our group at County level to improve the system because I know its flaws.

As a foster parent I worked with children, their parents and professionals, often in extremely volatile circumstances. I had to build relationships with each at different levels and my counselling training gave me the skills to do this. In my community work I have supported people with all sorts of mental health and social issues and I have worked hard to ensure they feel listened to and that they get the services they need. I will bring those skills to this role.

The Community Interest Company I founded four years ago, Volunteers Network, publishes the Eastbourne Voice newspaper, runs Pevensey Community Library (which we saved from closure), promotes volunteering, and manages Langney Community Centre. At the beginning of the pandemic we also set up a telephone befriending service to reduce social isolation, which will now become a permanent service to residents of East Sussex. All of our activities aim to make our community stronger, and compliment my work as a councillor.

I have been an Eastbourne Borough councillor for the past year representing the ward I work in, St. Anthony’s, but as a new resident of Ratton I look forward to meeting residents and finding out your views about where we live and what improvements need to be made.

If you would like to get in touch with me to talk about local issues or support my campaign in any way, do get in touch, I look forward to hearing from you.

Helen Burton


Email: [email protected]

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