THE founder of an eco-friendly bus company and prominent environmental campaigner has announced his intention to stand in next year’s local elections.

Tom Druitt, who runs the Big Lemon Bus Company, will stand in Brighton and Hove City Council’s Regency Ward for the Green Party.

His fiancé Alex Phillips, who he is set to marry this weekend, is also currently a city councillor for the Green Party.

Announcing his intention to stand, he said: “It's been a tough decision, and I have considered lots of possible reasons against it, but on balance I think it's the right thing to do. “I have been involved in city life for a number of years, and Brighton and Hove has had a special place in my heart ever since I moved here in 2003.”

Mr Druitt has hit the headlines many times in the past, not just for his association with the Big Lemon.

Earlier this year, he was cleared along with five other activists of any wronging following a protest at the building of a Bexhill to Hastings Link Road.

Brighton Magistrates Court heard he attached himself to a tree along the route to slow workers and help attract media attention.

Back in March last year, he took similar action when he camped overnight in an elm tree in Brighton.

The historic tree was due to be cut down as part of council works on the roundabout. But after two freezing nights at the top of the tree, local authority bosses reversed their decision and decided to let it stand.

He also appeared in The Argus in May this year when he was called in front of a traffic commissioner inquiry after using one of the Big Lemon buses to attend an anti Fracking protest in Greater Manchester.

The inquiry heard the vehicle had been abandoned and was blocking a road.

Mr Druitt has announced he will represent the Green Party in one of the seats which will be left vacant by the departure next May of council leader Jason Kitcat and his wife Anya.

Explaining his decision to stand for the party, he said: “I will be representing the Green Party, not because I agree with everything they say and do, but because I believe they have a strong vision for a better world. “Of course it is easier to have a vision than to implement one, and I have on occasion been among the (minority) Green Administration's loudest critics. “But I do feel that my own vision of a better future is most closely aligned with theirs, and rather than shout from the sidelines I have decided to step up and see what difference I can make myself.”