Party wins 23 council seats, a gain of 10, leaving Greens just short of having an overall majority, writes Ben Quinn in the Guardian
The Greens have emerged as the largest party on Brighton and Hove city council after local election gains underlined its importance as a beach-head for the Greens' broader national ambitions. Just over a year after Caroline Lucas made history by becoming the Greens' first MP, the party built on her success by winning 23 council seats in Brighton, a gain of 10, leaving it just short of an overall majority.
Lucas, who leads the party in England and Wales, said: "This is a fantastic result. I am delighted that the voters of Brighton and Hove have once again made history, by voting in the Greens as the largest party on the council. The fact that we held all our seats and gained 10 – with a total of 23 – shows more than ever the scale of Green support in the city. We have offered people a positive and progressive alternative to the older political parties, and they have welcomed it.
"Our councillors are determined to get the best possible deal for Brighton and Hove in these difficult times. And with all the results in, now is the moment for Greens to reach out to the many different groups – community organisations, businesses, unions and others – and local residents so that together, we can find the best solutions for this great city."
The Greens won 33% of the vote and displaced the Tories as the largest party on the council – the first time a local council in the UK has elected the Greens as the largest party. The Labour Party won 13 seats (32%), the Conservatives 18 (29%), and the Liberal Democrats lost their only seat after the party limped in with 5% of the vote.