Mental health worker and disability champion Ricky Perrin to stand for Greens – Brighton Kemptown council by-election

2 April 2024Ricky, 45, is a community campaigner, disability sports teacher and a dad. Brighton-born, he has lived in the city for most of his life and in east Brighton for the last eight years. 

“Every penny counts right now for schools, social care, charity, community and third sector organisations in the city. So, for Labour to spend a load of taxpayer cash on by-elections in the month that everyone (including me) has seen their council tax bill jump by 5% is wrong.”

Ricky said: “I have been involved with disability sports for years and have been campaigning to get better leisure centre facilities here in Brighton, with our public services, charity and community services being hit hard by cuts.

“I have felt for a long time that our elected officials locally and nationally do not represent people that rely on these public services. At a time when our public services are being stripped back with budget cuts, the people of Brighton and Hove are footing the bill for the by-elections here in Kemptown and in Queen’s Park, due to the previously elected people who won these seats allegedly not living in Brighton.

“Not only should the preceding councillors pay back any allowances or tax-payer money they received, but the party that selected them should pay all the costs to hold this by-election. Every penny counts right now for schools, social care, charity, community and third sector organisations in the city. So, for Labour to spend a load of taxpayer cash on by-elections in the month that everyone (including me) has seen their council tax bill jump by 5% is wrong.”  

Ricky added, “It should not have to be ordinary people  paying for these by-elections during our cost-of-living crisis and as child poverty and homelessness are rising in the city. If elected, you will find me in and around the community, at the end of an email or a zoom call to highlight the things that matter to all the people of Kemptown ward.” 

Ricky is passionate about protecting local services from the massive funding cuts to local authorities carried out by the Conservative government. He is critical of the decision by Brighton & Hove’s Labour-run council to close schools and axe vital voluntary and charity sector funding. In Ricky’s view, Labour have abandoned many of the promises they made to residents in last year’s local elections and residents in Kemptown deserve a strong opposition voice to hold the Labour administration to account. As a wheelchair user, Ricky also has first-hand knowledge of NHS services. 

The Greens were the closest challengers to Labour in the May 2023  local elections.

The Kemptown by-election is taking place due to the resignation of ex-Labour councillor Bharti Gajjar. Ms Gajjar was expelled from Labour last December alongside former Queen’s Park councillor, Chandni Mistry after the party investigated claims that the pair were living in Leicester. Both councillors have allegedly claimed thousands of pounds in allowances, despite barely attending any meetings; they are reported to have been unresponsive when contacted by residents. Questions still remain about how two individuals believed to be living outside the city were selected by the Labour Party. 

Ricky Perrin’s longer personal statement is below ‘Voter Information’ if of interest.



Voter information

To help with Ricky’s campaign contact the Brighton & Hove Green Party on our site:

Personal statement from Ricky Perrin

I was born in Brighton and have spent almost my whole life living in different areas of the city, living in east Brighton for the last eight years. In my early 20s, I had an injury that left me paralysed and using a wheelchair; my insurance did not pay out and I spent many years relying on the NHS, doctors, pharmacies, social housing, charities, and community services.

I have first-hand experience of needing our local services, and I feel they need protection so that if you or your family need them one day in the future, they are there for you in your time of need.

I am always getting involved in community bits and pieces, from food co-ops and food banks to community sports and community hubs; many people see me out and about walking my dog around the streets of Brighton, the seafront or in local parks.

Having always lived by the sea I get very upset by the levels of sewage being pumped into our rivers and sea and this led me to get more involved with the Green Party as they highlighted the issue. 

I have a teenage son, now 17. As he has grown up, I have become more concerned with climate issues, thinking about the world we leave behind us for future generations.

I currently work for a local disability charity in the mental health lived experience team. On my days off I take sports wheelchairs to schools and get children playing wheelchair sports like basketball, tennis and rugby. So if your child has returned home from school saying they did wheelchair sports in the last eight years then that could have been with me! I hope meeting them changed the perception of people with a disability they had before meeting me.

A year ago I missed out on being elected in the local elections in Brighton. While  I am really happy to have another go at being elected, I am upset about the reasons why these by-elections are being held! 

I hope that running as a candidate for a second time will inspire more people with mental and physical health conditions and disabilities to get involved in politics. 



To top