Local Policies


' Our Lib Dem policy for the 2023 Rother District elections has been approved by the local party Executive on 23 March this year and is endorsed by all our Lib Dem candidates, asking for your vote. Here it is............'

MANIFESTO for Rother Lib Dems at District Elections May 2023

Environmental action

Ensure by all means possible that Rother achieves its goal of zero carbon by 2030

  • Support Parish and Town Councils to declare their own Climate Emergency backed by action plans
  • Ensure the new Local Plan is as green as possible, protecting the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and all other environmental designations, delivering a low carbon agenda, increasing biodiversity, delivering affordable homes
  • Encourage and enable where possible retrofitting homes to reduce energy costs AND reduce emissions
  • Pursue renewable energy options to improve economics and sustainability of all Council buildings and premises where Council supported activities are undertaken, including leisure centres
  • Explore improving operation of the waste contract by lowering the carbon footprint of vehicles and improving recycling performance, e.g. by bringing in food waste collection
  • Create a green burial ground
  • Support the campaign for '20's Plenty'
  • Campaign for the introduction of Quiet Lanes
  • Promote cycling, walking and horse riding
  • Support public transport, especially the bus network
  • Install EV charging points in Rother run car parks and encouraging other authorities, organisations and businesses to do the same
  • Campaign to clean up Rother's beaches and rivers from sewage
  • Encourage more trees to be planted in Bexhill

Community action

  • Support tourism across the district, in planning and publicity and promoting the 1066 Country brand
  • Review the Tourism strategy and promote cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, business groups, major attractions and parish and town councils
  • Take advantage of all opportunities to bid for government funding by creating a professional team to handle such bids
  • Use Rother DC Housing Company to develop more sites in Rother with a high degree of sustainability and to improve the availability of affordable homes
  • Encourage greater adherence by property developers to social and affordable housing quotas for any new permissions granted
  • Encourage all communities who have not so far created their own Neighbourhood Plans to do so and encourage the review of existing NPs.
  • Continue to improve performance of Planning Enforcement
  • Work to support the ageing well principle
  • Work with partners to deliver new leisure strategy
  • Continue to support the rough sleepers initiative to place them temporary/ longer term accommodation
  • Create and support 'Good Neighbour' groups where none already existing to carry on similar schemes established during Covid, including litter picking, early reporting of graffiti and fly tipping
  • Revive the Town Hall modernisation project on a cost neutral or better basis to Council Tax payers
  • Promote a hotel for Bexhill
  • Support the De La Warr Pavilion and Sidley in achieving the aims of their successful Levelling Up Bid
  • Promote further the Rother Community Lottery
  • Support incorporating Ninfield into Rother

Bexhill and Battle Liberal Democrats statement on the Northeye proposal

The Home Office is planning to use the Military Camp at Northeye on the outskirts of South West Bexhill to house and process Asylum Seekers.

The Government should be prioritising safe and legal routes for processing asylum seekers making asylum applications, not trying to distract or delude the UK population by coming up with unrealistic headline grabbing ideas, which further demonise asylum seekers who have risked their lives to get here.

Opening up the near-derelict site at Northeye will do nothing to help the 160000 asylum seekers in the current asylum application queue.

Northeye is a former prison and still has its 20 foot high fence around it. It has been branded on Thursday on BBC News: "Not the right place to be putting people who have fled the Taliban in Afghanistan and bombs and bullets in Syria. They are vulnerable and traumatised people." Who said this? Enver Soloman, Chief Executive of the Refugee Council. We agree that housing such people in such prison conditions is inhumane and degrading.

We need to put pressure on the Government to ensure that the processes for entry applications for these people are dealt with as quickly and properly as possible.

But the migrant crisis is of the Government's own making by not providing legal routes for asylum seekers to apply to come to this country. Remember as part of our membership of the European Union before Brexit, the UK was able to return some asylum seekers back to France or Belgium under the terms of the Dublin Convention. But our Government chose not to negotiate any replacement for that Convention.

Furthermore in the recent discussions between Conservative Prime Minister Sunak and French President Macron, Sunak chose to offer to pay £478 million to build a detention centre in France when that money should have gone towards paying for and staffing a visa processing centre in France.

Any proposal such as what we have just received, coming out of the blue this week, must be the subject of the most rigorous of consultations involving all communities affected and all levels of government, especially at the local level.

There is a Fact sheet, so called, published on the Government website at

Factsheet: Bexhill asylum accommodation (accessible) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

If people wish to write of their concerns they should do so to the Home Office at public.enquiries@homeoffice.gov.uk and to copy in the Bexhill and Battle MP, Huw Merriman at huw.merriman.mp@parliament.uk

It is the Home Office's responsibility to come up with a workable solution so that asylum applications can be dealt with quickly, fairly and efficiently. That way they would not have to spend so much on hotel bills.

Stephen Hardy MBE

Chair Bexhill and Battle Liberal Democrats 31 March 2023

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