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This is how Preston may look by the 2019 local elections

Posted on - 29th August, 2017 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - News, Politics, Preston Council
Sunset with Preston Town Hall in the foreground
Sunset with Preston Town Hall in the foreground Pic: Sonia Bashir

Proposals to cut the number of councillors and drop a number of council wards are moving to the next stage.

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Prestonians are being asked for their views on the new voting arrangements for elections to Preston City Council.

The city’s 22 wards would be reduced to 16 wards and the total number of councillors would fall by nine, to 48 elected representatives.

Three councillors would be elected to each of the 16 new wards – with many keeping their existing names but being enlarged.

It’s also proposed there would be no local elections in 2018 and an ‘all-out’ election in 2019 to elect councillors under the new arrangements.

The independent Local Government Boundary Commission is asking people for their views on the draft proposals.

A 10-week consultation is running from Tuesday (29 August) through to 6 November.

Read more: Voting age pilot for letting 16-year-olds vote could happen in Preston

Chair of the Boundary Commission professor Colin Mellors said: “We are publishing proposals for a new pattern of wards across Preston and we are keen to hear what local people think of the recommendations.

“Over the next ten weeks, we are asking local people to tell us if they agree with the proposals or if not, how they can be improved.

“Our review aims to deliver electoral equality for local voters. This means that each councillor represents a similar number of people so that everyone’s vote in council elections is worth roughly the same regardless of where you live.

“We also want to ensure that our proposals reflect the interests and identities of local communities across Preston and that the pattern of wards can help the council deliver effective local government to local people.

“We will consider all the submissions we receive whoever they are from and whether your evidence applies to the whole city or just part of it.”

The 16 new wards would be:
Ashton
Brookfield
City Centre
Deepdale
Fishwick & Frenchwood
Garrison
Greyfriars
Ingol & Cottam
Lea & Larches
Moor Park
Preston Rural East
Preston Rural North
Ribbleton
Sharoe Green
St Matthew’s
Tulketh

A map of the proposed wards can be seen in this document.

The draft proposals were voted through at the city council’s full council meeting in May, incorporating many amendments suggested by council leader councillor Peter Rankin who had tabled an alternative proposals.

Read more: The response from Prestonian’s to the city’s potential new boundaries for electing MPs

The boundary review has drawn a 36-page response from the Preston Conservative group who while agreeing with the reduction to 16 wards have radically different boundaries and names for many of them.

Any comments can be made on the Boundary Commission website or by emailing reviews@lgbce.org.uk – you can also write to the commission at:
The Review Officer (Preston)
Local Government Boundary Commission for England
14th floor, Millbank Tower
London
SW1P 4QP

Once comments are received the commission will publish its final recommendations in January 2018.

Once agreed this will go to the Houses of Parliament for discussion on a draft order. Once 40 fays days have lapsed the draft order will be ‘made’ and the new wards would come into being for the May 2019 elections.

What do you think of the proposals for the wards? And reducing the councillors? Let us know in the comments below

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