Brighton gets a rubbish council (again)

Brighton gets a rubbish council (again)
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It's not just Glasgow currently overrun with rubbish. Down in Brighton, the right-on Green brigade there have found themselves in something of a bin-related disaster following industrial action by local refuse collectors. Streets are now overflowing with dozens of black sacks, with rats being spotted and horrendous smells reported as garbage piles up by the kerb. The city's local newspaper even ran a picture of an abandoned sex doll on its front page story, urging those involved to 'stop the bin strike for her.' Talk about an issue blowing up...

Brighton and Hove council is in a dispute with the GMB union which has led to 10 days of industrial action and could last until at least mid-November. The union is striking due to concerns over drivers being removed from long-standing rounds and pay, with an offer expected to cost anywhere between £500,000 to £14.2 million. GMB have now refused to take part in further talks until Tory councillor Joe Miller apologises for telling the council that 'you can't negotiate with terrorists.' It's all gone very Winter of Discontent down there...

Such issues are (sadly) nothing new for the long-suffering residents of Brighton and Hove. Over the last decade the city has been plagues by numerous strikes including multiple disputes with the local bin collectors, both under the two Green administrations of 2011-2015 and 2020-present and the intervening Labour one of 2015-2020.

Indeed, Green councillors even made the issue of refuse collectors a key issue prior to the last elections of 2019 with Phélim Mac Cafferty, the current leader, railing against  the then Labour administration for 'a miserable summer of overflowing bins' back in 2018. Despite writing numerous social media posts back then that it was 'simply not good enough' that 'residents are being failed', Cafferty has now been embroiled in the same problems which bedevilled his predecessors. So much for the trash talk.

Rubbish councils are nothing new of course but Brighton's leadership must take the crown for such a waste of potential.

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

Topics in this articlePolitics