Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party will have to split into three constituency parties, national Labour members have ordered.

The city's Labour group, which with more than 6,000, members is the largest in the country, is likely to be broken up into three smaller parties from next year.

The move follows an investigation and three month suspension by the party's National Executive Committee (NEC) following accusations of intimidation and voting irregularities at the local party's AGM.

Mark Sandell, who was elected local party chair at that annual meeting in July, has been expelled from the party for his links to the Alliance For Workers' Party while least 15 other members have also been suspended.

Supporters of Jeremy Corbyn have called for a public meeting of Labour Party members in Brighton and Hove while party branches are being urged to pass motions calling for all expelled and suspended members to be re-instated immediately.

NEC members met yesterday to discuss the findings of a three-month investigation into the local party.

In a statement Mr Sandell  said: “My expulsion is a direct attack on the hundreds of Labour Party members who attended the annual meeting of Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party on July 9.

“Members voted overwhelmingly for me and other supporters of Jeremy Corbyn as the new leadership team to represent more than 6,200 members across our city.

“My expulsion is another desperate and undemocratic manoeuvre by those in the Labour Party who have lost the political argument against Corbyn and who want to silence the majority of Labour Party members.”