The Liberal Democrats have selected the candidate they hope to oust the Green Party from their only seat in Parliament.

Ashley Ridley has been chosen to stand in Brighton Pavilion at the next election, a seat which has been held by the Greens since 2010.

The current MP Caroline Lucas announced in June that she will stand down when voters go to the polls sometime in 2024.

Sian Berry, former Green Party leader and member of the London Assembly, has been chosen as her party’s candidate to keep the seat Green.

Mr Ridley, a football coach and youth worker, is hoping to flip the seat to the Liberal Democrats for the first time ever.

He said: “I am delighted to have been selected by my local party. I have lived in Brighton for most of my life and I believe that, despite some changes, it is a wonderful city to live and work in.”

If elected, Mr Ridley has pledged to forge closer ties with the European Union, ensure sufficient funding for the NHS to “deliver a reliable public service”, and “ban fracking for good”.

“The greatest threat to our country is global warming - and the Liberal Democrats will work with all parties to address this in a way that boosts economic growth and well-paid employment,” he said.

Mr Ridley previously stood as the Liberal Democrat candidate in East Worthing and Shoreham at the last general election in 2019, winning 7.8 per cent of the vote and placing third.

He also ran in the local elections in Brighton and Hove, most recently standing in Hollingdean and Fiveways in May and placing eighth.

A spokesman for the Liberal Democrats said: “Ashley combines experience with energy, passion and a determination to improve the lives of people in Brighton Pavilion by listening to what they have to say and doing whatever he can to help.”

Labour is hoping to win Brighton Pavilion for the first time since 2005 at the next election, following the party’s recent success at the local election.

Although the party has not yet picked a candidate, a number of activists have already launched bids to be selected, including comedian Eddie Izzard.