Listen here: Town of Cats’ Single — Demon

by on Apr.13, 2015, under News


Like a bit of Gyp-Hop Ska with lash­ings of Latino and a side of Funk? Look no fur­ther, Town of Cats most recent single ‘Demon’ cap­tures all of the above and more.

Here’s the link to the Sound­cloud page for the single:

or go to

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People’s Republic of Brighton & Hove

by on Feb.26, 2015, under News


The People’s Repub­lic page is a sup­port group in these dif­fi­cult times, as well as a space to be pos­it­ive and light­hearted. We would like it to reflect everything that’s sane and pro­gress­ive about our fant­astic city.” — Facebook

I woke up the morn­ing after the elec­tion and saw that Brighton and Hove was now just a tiny red and green island in an abso­lute sea of blue. And I just wanted some­where to share my grief,” says Jason Smart, on the moment of vis­ceral mourn­ing that led him to declare the inde­pend­ence of the People’s Repub­lic of Brighton and Hove.

Nations have been foun­ded on a whim, but the People’s Repub­lic of Brighton and Hove may be the first to be foun­ded as a thera­peutic device after an unex­pec­ted Tory vic­tory. Last week, while the rest of the Eng­land was fren­ziedly vot­ing Tory, Brighton and Hove dug their heels in, and instead voted in a Green MP (Car­oline Lucas, her second term and this time with a major­ity of 8,000) and a Labour MP (Peter Kyle, tak­ing over a tra­di­tion­ally Tory con­stitu­ency with a major­ity of just over 1,000).

Smart may have inten­ded the repub­lic as a joke, but as the city, full of envir­on­ment­al­ists and lefties, woke up, there was plenty of need for vent­ing of grief and nearly 8,000 people have signed up. There have already been requests for asylum from neigh­bour­ing Kemp­town, and fur­ther north-east, Lewes has reques­ted an inva­sion and prom­ised to sup­ply the fireworks.

The republic's new passport.

The republic’s new pass­port. Pho­to­graph — Face­bookThe repub­lic already has a flag (although there is, nat­ur­ally, some dis­pute about the font), a pass­port, and a few the­or­et­ical policies. Tor­ies, for example, will not be depor­ted, but instead “wel­comed – we need to try to under­stand their mind­set and work out how to con­vert them”. There is also talk of build­ing a tac­tical alli­ance with “our nat­ural allies, the Scots. If any­one is likely to recog­nise our inde­pend­ence, it’s Nic­ola Stur­geon.”

One sup­porter has sug­ges­ted an entry ques­tion­naire on “early 90s music, Star Wars, graphic design, skate­boards and BMX­ing and Bobby Gillespie, fol­lowed by an appraisal of over­all style factor ie beard style, length, tat­too qual­ity and cut of jeans”. Chumbawumba’sTub­thump­ing is being sug­ges­ted as a pos­sible anthem, although Bob Marley’s One Love is fight­ing back. A pos­sible con­sti­tu­tion would begin, “We have the right to bare legs”, while aid par­cels to sur­round­ing Tory con­stitu­en­cies would include Brighton Gin, cof­fee, a yoga mat and a seagull relax­a­tion tape.

Now all I need to do is grow a beard,” says Smart, who was a hat-maker before des­tiny caught up with him. “I’ll spend the after­noon work­ing on that.”

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Listen here: Economics Weekly with John Weeks Show 23

by on Feb.04, 2015, under News


John Weeks Eco­nom­ics Show 23



John Weeks Eco­nom­ics Show 22


John Weeks Eco­nom­ics Show 21



                                                                         John Weeks Eco­nom­ics show 20


 Greeks receiv­ing dis­tri­bu­tion of free food

Mol­dovan women await free food distribution


John Weeks Eco­nom­ics show 18



John Weeks Eco­nom­ics show 17



John Weeks Eco­nom­ics show 16



An inter­view with Brooke Lar­son about Latin America


con­tin­ued dis­cus­sion about United King­dom Gen­eral Elec­tion 2015, and Greek government.


United King­dom Gen­eral Elec­tion, 2015.


An inter­view with Jeff Faux about the American’s Economy


This week John Weeks dis­cusses fur­ther the issue of Cuba with Eliza­beth Dore talk­ing about “Voices from the Cuban Street”



 The pho­to­graph is of Eliza­beth Dore and Regla Hernan­dez Gomez, one of the people she inter­viewed for her 10 year study of at

Atti­tudes of Cubans toward the revolution.










First of a new series of com­ment­ary on eco­nomic con­di­tions and policy in the UK and bey­ond from John Weeks.John Weeks is a pro­fessor emer­itus of the Uni­ver­sity of London’s School of Ori­ental and African Stud­ies and author of The Eco­nom­ics of the 1%: How Main­stream Eco­nom­ics Serves the Rich, Obscures Real­ity and Dis­torts Policy. His recent policy work includes a sup­ple­mental unem­ploy­ment pro­gram for the European Union and advising the cent­ral banks of Argen­tina and Zam­bia. More info on John at

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Before the Roll Back — Brighton Uni Students read the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

by on Jan.19, 2015, under News



The new gov­ern­ment has prom­ised to scrap the Human Rights Act. It’s a huge blow not just to us here in the UK, but to every­one still fight­ing for these rights around the world.

The Human Rights Act 1998 mostly came into force on 2 Octo­ber 2000.Its aim was to incor­por­ate into UK law the rights con­tained in the European Con­ven­tion on Human Rights. The Act makes a rem­edy for breach of a Con­ven­tion right avail­able in UK courts, without the need to go to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) in Stras­bourg.The European Con­ven­tion on Human Rights draws much of its inspir­a­tion from the Uni­ver­sal Declar­a­tion of Human Rights.It seems appro­pri­ate there­fore to look again at this won­der­ful doc­u­ment and, as our Brighton Uni­ver­sity read­ers have done in this record­ing, to recon­sider the aspir­a­tions and val­ues herein.


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SolaRoad cycle path does better than expected!

by on Oct.08, 2014, under News


What a concept for a pilot pro­ject. Can’t we change our roads into gigantic solar pan­els? Har­vest energy from them? Get solar elec­tri­city from them, fed into the elec­tri­city grid and used for street light­ing, traffic sys­tems, house­holds and elec­tric cars?

A public-private part­ner­ship in the Neth­er­lands has such a going on, in the form of sun­light on the road sur­faces con­ver­ted into elec­tri­city, in the form of a bike path. The pro­ject par­ti­cipants for Sol­aRoad want the world to know that this pro­ject so far is look­ing good. Sol­aRoad is in a pilot phase for a three-year period; The Asso­ci­ated Press said that this was a 3.5-million Euro project.

The first six months of the pilot phase were suc­cess­ful, accord­ing to a Sol­aRoad press release issued earlier this month. The energy yield was bey­ond their expect­a­tions. Spokes­per­son Sten de Wit said they were sur­prised to see the level of suc­cess so quickly. Case in point: “The bike road opened half a year ago and already gen­er­ated over 3,000 kWh,” he said. “If we trans­late this to an annual yield, we expect more than the 70 kWh per square meter per year, which we pre­dicted as an upper limit in the labor­at­ory stage. We can there­fore con­clude that it was a suc­cess­ful first half year.”

The engin­eers behind the bike path design had to develop a solar road that could not only have requis­ite strength but also res­ist skids. Sol­aRoad has been described as a “liv­ing lab” of about 70 meters.

SolaRoad cycle path electricity yield exceeds expectations
Credit: Sol­aRoad

The cycle path is made up of con­crete mod­ules of 2.5 by 3.5 meters. Solar cells are fit­ted and pro­tec­ted by a centimeter-thick top layer of safety glass with a trans­par­ent, skid-resistant coat­ing. The other lane does not have solar cells; it serves as a test area. said that, “While a flat solar panel is 30 per­cent less effi­cient than those at an angle or rooftop, there’s plenty of sur­face to make up for that.”

This liv­ing lab, how­ever, has hit some issues along the way. Jon Fin­gas in Engad­get wrote, “Things haven’t been going per­fectly. The coat­ing on the ’ pro­tect­ive glass tends to peel off when the weather changes, for example, sug­gest­ing that the path could be expens­ive to main­tain as-is.” (The press release said that at the end of Decem­ber 2014 and in early Spring of 2015 a small sec­tion of the coat­ing “delamin­ated.” Large tem­per­at­ure fluc­tu­ations can cause local delamin­a­tion due to shrink­age in the coat­ing, it noted. “Repairs have been made and the devel­op­ment of an improved top layer is now in an advanced stage.”) The AP report said the fluc­tu­ations caused part of it to peel off namely in early winter and early spring.

Fin­gas remarked that, as the pro­ject to last for another two and a half years, “Sol­aRoad believes that it’ll have plenty of time to iron out the kinks, and it’s con­fid­ent enough that it plans to test its tech­no­logy on small muni­cipal roads in the future.”

Sol­aRoad offi­cially opened in Novem­ber 2014. Uber­gizmo said about 150,000 cyc­lists have crossed the Sol­aRoad in the six months that it has gone live.

The AP report said SolaRoad’s public-private part­ner­ship includes the province of Noord-Holland, TNO, Ooms Civiel and Imtech.

Look­ing to the future, TNO pro­ject man­ager Wim ven der Poel said, “Using this energy to charge while they are driv­ing over the road is a beau­ti­ful dream, which might become real­ity. Sol­aRoad acts as a step towards a closed eco­sys­tem. From mobil­ity through energy back to mobil­ity – which makes the circle complete.”

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LISTEN HERE: Murder Clinic — The Scrap of Lace (Radio Play)

by on Oct.08, 2014, under News

Listen here to The Scrap of Lace — a murder mys­tery radio play read by Radio Free Brighton volun­teers and work exper­i­ence stu­dents from Down­lands School.


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Lecture: Bioregional Photography Panel at Brighton University.

by on Oct.04, 2014, under News


A lec­ture and panel dis­cuss­ing the envir­on­ment, hos­ted by Nina Emmet founder of Foto­Doc­u­ment and Pooran Desai, founder of Biore­gional and One Planet Liv­ing. This lec­ture looks at some excel­lent pho­to­graphic col­lec­tions put together by the panel, cen­ter­ing on key envir­on­mental themes such as water usage, waste and recycling.

Held at the Sal­lis Ben­ney Theatre, Brighton, three of the ten com­mis­sioned pho­to­graph­ers, Thomas Ball, Sophie Ger­rard and Mur­ray Bal­lard, took part in the dis­cus­sion about their One Planet City photo essays now installed in pub­lic spaces around Brighton & Hove. . The pro­ject was launched under the Brighton Photo Bien­nial 2014 — core arts part­ner for the pro­ject Photoworks.

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Howard Johns: Power To The People!

by on Oct.02, 2014, under News

Howard Johns is the founder of South­ern Solar Ltd, and has been installing solar hot water sys­tems and other small scale renew­able energy sys­tems for over ten years. Dur­ing this Power To The People speech, he talks about renew­able energy, spe­cific­ally Solar Power.

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Permission for hundreds of homes and jobs at derelict fruit and veg market, Circus Street, Brighton

by on Sep.18, 2014, under News

Coun­cil­lors have approved a major regen­er­a­tion scheme in cent­ral Brighton which will deliver hun­dreds of jobs and homes.

The plan­ning com­mit­tee today (Septem­ber 17, 2014) agreed the Public-Private Part­ner­ship scheme by Cathed­ral (Brighton) Ltd, the Uni­ver­sity of Brighton and the city coun­cil to trans­form the one–hectare site off Cir­cus Street.

The former muni­cipal fruit and veg mar­ket would become a mixed-use scheme and ‘innov­a­tion quarter’, expec­ted to cre­ate 400 jobs and inject £200m into the city’s eco­nomy over the next 10 years.

Per­mis­sion includes 142 new homes, 20 per cent affordable.

New teach­ing and research facil­it­ies would be cre­ated for the Uni­ver­sity of Brighton, includ­ing a new lib­rary.  Pres­sure would be taken off the city’s fam­ily homes by the inclu­sion of 450 units of stu­dent accom­mod­a­tion, say officials.

Along­side will be a new dance stu­dio for South East Dance, expec­ted to attract 70,000 vis­it­ors and users a year.

Work­spaces would be aimed at start-up busi­nesses, artists and lar­ger com­pan­ies.  A mod­ern office build­ing, includ­ing over 3,000 sqm of flex­ible space would help grow­ing cre­at­ive and digital busi­nesses remain and flour­ish in the city.

Per­mis­sion includes res­taur­ants or shops at ground floor level, around a new pub­lic square.  Cathed­ral are prom­ising a “new genre” of urban devel­op­ment with green walls, green roofs, 78 new trees and allot­ments for food grow­ing — pro­du­cing over 200kg of food per year for residents.

Developers have agreed to pay £250,000 to improve local trans­port and recre­ation pro­vi­sion and to use at least 20 per cent local labour for construction.


For more inform­a­tion you can visit:

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Latest news on our Pledge to Save the NHS

by on Aug.13, 2014, under News


Our Pledge to Save the NHS! What you can do now.…

Sus­sex Defend the NHS and Brighton & Hove Keep Our NHS Pub­lic are seek­ing sup­port from local Uni­ons and Com­munity Groups for their Pledge to Save the NHS (attached here).  It’s aimed at pro­spect­ive par­lia­ment­ary and coun­cil can­did­ates, and the cam­paign to get them to sign it will be launched at the end of the sum­mer, with press events, a web site, let­ter writ­ing and a hust­ings planned lead­ing up to the elec­tions in 2015.
We’ve got off to a good start: so far we’ve secured sup­port from the GMB, Brighton & Hove NUJ, Uni­son Sus­sex Part­ner­ship Branch, Brighton & Hove Uni­son, Brighton & Hove People’s Assembly, and Brighton & Hove Trades Coun­cil. And there are more in the pipeline. (We’ll be adding logos shortly)
Are you a Trade Union mem­ber? If so, please raise sup­port­ing our Pledge to Save the NHS with your branch so that we can add your Logo and show the local par­lia­ment­ary and coun­cil can­did­ates where their pri­or­it­ies should lie. We’d be happy to provide a speaker at your next branch meet­ing to tell you more about our campaign.
And if you are a mem­ber of a Com­munity Group, please see if it will lend its sup­port too.
Events com­ing up

Can you join us? Let us know if you can help out for a while at any of these stalls or if you plan to come to our meet­ings. We also have work­ing groups for our Roll of Dis­hon­our, Pledge to save the NHS, & SMS cam­paigns, if that is more your style. Let us know!


Sat 6 Sept

999 Call for the NHSPeople’s #march4nhs Rally for end of march from Jarrow

West­min­ster Lon­don– details to follow

Tues 9 Sept 

 Health and Well Being Board

4pm Hove Town Hall

(lobby for SMS tbc)

Tues 9 Sept

Sus­sex Defend the NHS organ­ising meet

7pm Brighthelm Centre

Wed 10 Sept           

Health Over­view and Scru­tiny Committee

4pm Hove Town Hall

Tues 23 Sept

B&H Clin­ical Com­mis­sion­ing Group Board and AGM

2–4.30 & 4.30−6 Brighthelm Centre

Tues 14th Oct

Health and Well­being Board

4pm Hove Town Hall

Thurs 16th Oct

Policy and Resources Committee

4pm Hove Town Hall
Cupp Sem­inar: ‘The NHS Cit­izen’ with Simon Bur­all and Anthony Zachar­zewski
1.30 — 2.30pm, Fri­day 10th Octo­ber — A500 Check­land Build­ing, Falmer cam­pus
Simon and Anthony are part of a lar­ger part­ner­ship devel­op­ing NHS Cit­izen<>. A national sys­tem of pub­lic and patient engage­ment being developed to hold the Board of NHS Eng­land to account. While the sys­tem is national, most patients and cit­izens exper­i­ence the health ser­vice at a local level. This sem­inar will explore how the sys­tem is being designed to work and will invite par­ti­cipants to draw on their exper­i­ence, expert­ise and know­ledge to help answer ques­tions about whether and how such sys­tems can plug into local spaces where cit­izens are already debat­ing health and social care. Simon is the Dir­ector of Involve<> and Anthony is Dir­ector of Dem­soc<> and both are involved in numer­ous innov­a­tions to enhance civic participation.

This sem­inar is free and open to all but advance book­ing is required. Refresh­ments will be avail­able.
Book on to this event<>


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