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Join The Hastings & Rye Liberal Democrats

Vince Cable and Nick Perry campaigningIn a nutshell: The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity - and everything flows from that.

Hastings & Rye Liberal Democrats are a group of local residents who are passionate about and committed to our great towns.

On this site, you can find out more about the team, read about our latest activities and find out how you can get involved.

Liberal Democrat news and updates

Local News

  • Focus
    Article: Apr 23, 2019

    The Conservatives aren't listening. They are not listening in Parliament: they're certainly not listening in Rother.

    Click on the links to read what your candidate is going to do for you. Vote Liberal Democrats on the 2nd May 2019.

    Fairlight, Guestling, Icklesham, Pett. Andrew Mier - A Voice FOR the Villages

    Andrew has lived in Fairlight for almost twenty years with Carol. He has served on the Parish Council for eleven years, nearly five as Chair. Before that, Andrew was Chair of the Fairlight Residents' Association for four years. Andrew was instrumental in setting up a formal Fairlight Parish Council Planning Committee and has served on it since its inception. He chaired the Design Standards Working Group as part of Fairlight's Neighbourhood Plan (sadly abandoned due to being overtaken by events at Wakehams Farm). A qualified lawyer, Andrew worked for the Government Legal Service before retirement. He is a member of the Fairlight Players, plays tennis and tries his hand at rather bad amateur art.

    Howard has lived in Winchelsea for thirteen years with his partner David. He is a retired teacher who taught history and politics at Cranbrook School for thirteen years. Before that he worked as a vicar in south London and he is still busily active in the life of Winchelsea parish church. Howard is deeply involved in the life of Winchelsea. He is a passionate gardener; chair of the local Garden Society; organiser of the NGS garden openings for Winchelsea; president of the Literary Society and a regular bridge player. He is a keen environmentalist who keeps bees, enthusiastically supports the work of Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, Butterfly Conservation and the RSPB, and is a Friend of Great Dixter. He firmly believes that quality of life issues arising from openness to nature should be given a high profile in local politics.

    Brede, Broad Oak and Udimore - Introducing Derek Greenup

    Derek Greenup is a long-time resident of Rother who, now retired, spent 40 years in secondary education - 16 as a headteacher. He is a proud and committed husband, father and grandfather. He wants to be part of building harmonious communities which prioritise public (particularly mental) health, the environment, and inter-generational leisure time and activities. He is appalled at the lack of investment in local services by the Conservative Party and has been motivated to stand for election because at a local, and a national level, the Conservatives seem to have stopped listening to residents and voters.

    Playden, Rye Foreign, Rye Harbour & Winchelsea Beach - Introducing Sue Schlesinger

    Sue is a driving force behind much of the Rye area's cultural life. After some years as an actor on the stage and television, Sue studied ceramics whilst her children were growing up. With her husband, she decided to move down to Sussex to an Oast House, outside Rye, that they'd inherited. Since then Sue has been a governor at Rye College and the first chairman of Governors at the Studio School in Rye, now sadly closed. Sue enjoys being a volunteer coordinator at the Hastings International Piano Competition and is the Box Office for Peasmarsh Chamber Music Festival. The Arts are an easy target for Tory austerity, yet are a vital part of our communities and play an important role in our tourist industry, on which much employment in our area depends.


    1) Rother is dominated by Bexhill and the Tories. Half of the councillors, but more than half of the money and time go into Bexhill. Brede & Udimore need a Voice.

    2) Rother's extreme application of Tory austerity policies have made its finances even worse. Austerity is now damaging the country and stifling Rother.

    3) Listen to the people of Rother District - across the country & the district the Tories are no longer listening to us nor speaking for us.

  • David Tutt v2
    Article: Mar 9, 2019

    At the meeting of the Governance Committee at East Sussex County Council this week the issue of employee pay was on the agenda.

    David Tutt (leader of the main Opposition, the Liberal Democrats) rightly supported the 2% increase for most staff, but he also proposed a freeze on the pay for Chief Officers (this is six members of staff earning £1.5m between them per annum).

  • international Womens day
    Article: Mar 8, 2019

    We Have a Great History of Liberal Women

    John Holmes the former Liberal Chief Agent once told us that HQ always thought of Hastings as "Women's World" because all the prominent members were women. On international woman's day let's remember and celebrate some famous and not so famous local, liberal minded women who have left their mark on society. You can read about them below.

  • West Marina
    Article: Feb 21, 2019

    Your objection must arrive before noon on Friday 1 March 2019

    If you want to object to the HBC proposal to dispose of the old bathing pool site (yes, HBC thought we would miss this if they referred to it as 'open space'), but have not yet done so, you can now send your objection directly to the Chief Legal Officer by email.

    This notice was hidden deep inside the page of the Hastings Observer because a notice of 'disposal' is required by law, under SECTION 123(1)(2a) of the LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972. Approval must occur before the old bathing pool site can be leased to the developers. So the council is desperate to have approval granted without delay. Once this is granted the lease can be signed and planning will begin in earnest.

    Your objection must arrive before noon on Friday 1 March 2019

    QUOTE ref: HM/001082 and send your email to
  • Put it to the people
    Article: Feb 20, 2019

    Put The Brexit Deal To The People - 23rd March 2019

    Join us on 23rd of March for the 'Put It To The People March' to make the calls for a People's Vote too loud to ignore.

    On the 23rd of March, just six days before the Government hopes to take Britain out of the EU, hundreds of thousands of people will march on Parliament offering a solution to a crisis that threatens their living standards, businesses and jobs. We demand a People's Vote, come on 23 March, it could be a case of now or never.

  • Two big wins v2
    Article: Feb 19, 2019


    We have been fighting to change the law on upskirting and tenancy fees - to improve the lives of those living in Britain. these two bills receive Royal Assent - ie they become law!!

    Two bills that the Liberal Democrats have been fighting on, to improve the lives of those living in Britain.

  • Brexit news coverage
    Article: Nov 14, 2018

    I realise it is a bit nerdy, but if you would like the full text of the agreement so that you can form your own opinion on this agreement - it is 585 pages...

    Download the agreement full text

    We also have a political declaration on the future relationship. This is arguably the more important document as it outlines the agreement that we hope to negotiate with the EU over the next couple of years, and it is only 15 pages long!

  • Chair of Hastings & Rye LibDems - Steve Milton
    Article: Nov 11, 2018

    At 11am on the 11th Nov 2018 Hastings joined with the rest of the country and the world in remembering the end of World War I.

    While the primary focus of the day is the soldiers that died in that singular mass slaughter and all the wars that have followed that so-called "war to end all wars", it is worth meditating on the total cost in human lives that it is estimated was the result.

  • Anti-Brexit march in Exeter, 2018
    Article: Oct 29, 2018

    About 700,000 people descended on London to complain about the way the Brexit negotiations are going. That is 1% of the population of the UK.

    The mood was peaceful and friendly, aided by the gloriously unseasonal

    l weather. People of all ages and from all over the country and beyond, all wondering how we have managed to end up in such a terrible self-destructive mess. Foreigners used to look to England and whether they liked us or loathed us, they all had a sneaking respect for our competence. Suddenly they think that we have gone mad.

  • Victoria Court Flats derelict
    Article: Oct 29, 2018

    The number of households being moved out of London by councils has increased dramatically, was the headline in the Guardian today. 1,200 households were sent out of the capital in the first 6 months of this year. And, of course, the councils that are worst affected by this forced exodus from London are all the surrounding areas.

All News

  • Article: May 26, 2019
    By Dan Schmeising

    So as you may have heard - Vince is stepping down. That means a leadership contest has been triggered. Here's how to have your say on the future of our party!

    But who can vote for the next Lib Dem leader?

    The answer is simple - to vote, you need to join the Lib Dems as a member.

    Who's standing to be leader?

  • Article: May 24, 2019

    As you know, Vince has now formally announced his resignation, and, as your President, I am triggering the process for the election of his successor as Leader of the Liberal Democrats.

    I'd like to take a moment to thank Vince for all he's done since he was elected leader in 2017. He's been a steadying influence when it was most needed - and that's led to us gaining new MEPs (exact number to be announce tomorrow evening!) and almost 800 councillors. Thank you, Vince.

  • Article: May 24, 2019

    Last night, the British people finished voting in the European elections. The fallout is there for all to see, with the Prime Minister finally conceding this morning that she has reached the end of the road.

    Our campaigning over the last three years has kept the cause of remaining in the European Union alive, and I now believe we have a strong chance of stopping Brexit. When the votes are counted on Sunday, I expect us to do well.

  • Article: May 24, 2019
    By Vince Cable

    This morning, Theresa May conceded defeat and announced her resignation as Prime Minister.

    This will undoubtedly be spun by hardline Tories as a failure on her behalf. They'll tell us that a true Brexit believer would have been able to do it.

    But a new Prime Minister won't solve Brexit. Neither will a General Election. Leaving the EU without a deal will cause our country untold harm and widen the gap between the richest and poorest in society.

  • Article: May 23, 2019
    By Dan Schmeising

    That's that - polls for the European elections are now closed!

    We've fought so, so hard - I'm incredibly proud of each and every single one of our candidates, campaigners and voters. 💛

    In the last 6 weeks, we've:

    🔶 Fought a large-scale campaign that went toe-to-toe with Labour, the Conservatives and Nigel Farage's Brexit Party
    🔶 Delivered over 12 million letters
    🔶 Reached over 2.5 million people via social media - on polling day alone
    🔶 Knocked on 225,000 doors
    🔶 Nearly tripled our standing in the polls - from 7% to 20%:

  • Article: May 23, 2019

    We've had an amazing campaign - and now it's nearly over. You've got until 10 tonight to get out and cast your vote for the Liberal Democrats to stop Brexit!

    We're the biggest, strongest Remain party - and we're on course for an amazing result. These European elections are your chance to send a message to the pro-Brexit Labour and Conservative parties - we just want it to stop.

  • Article: May 22, 2019

    Tomorrow, my first ever vote is going to be a vote for the Liberal Democrats to stop Brexit.

    Just in case the 'Bollocks to Brexit' campaign slogan didn't make it clear enough; every vote for the Lib Dems is a vote to Stop Brexit and remain in the European Union. They're the biggest remain party and were the first to call for a People's Vote back in 2016.

  • Article: May 22, 2019

    I'm proud to have been the anti-Brexit Spokesperson for a party that has been unequivocal about Brexit for three years.

    Meanwhile, like many people, my colleagues and I have attempted to decipher Corbyn's riddles and work out exactly what the Labour position is on Brexit.

    Labour, Conservatives, UKIP, or the Brexit Party: they all want Brexit.

  • Article: May 22, 2019

    1. Lord Heseltine, Tory peer

    The former Deputy PM endorsed us in the Sunday Times. He immediately had the whip suspended, which as Twitter pointed out was a bit suspect:

  • Article: May 22, 2019
    By Wera Hobhouse

    Throughout our history, the Liberal Democrats have lead the way on green issues. The 1979 Liberal/SDP manifesto called for a "war on waste and pollution" and highlighted "the need to reserve the natural environment for future generations."

    Forty years later, our 2019 European manifesto is no less radical. Just last week, Vince Cable announced our commitment to campaign for an EU-wide ban on fracking.