East Cambridgeshire District Council fights to keep Littleport in Cambridgeshire when it comes to parliamentary elections
- Credit: Archant
Keeping Littleport in Cambridgeshire when it comes to choosing an MP is the aim of a proposal put forward by East Cambridgeshire District Council.
The district authority has drawn up its proposal in response to a suggestion by the Boundary Commission for England (BCE) which would see Littleport East and West wards move into the new South West Norfolk parliamentary constituency.
Littleport is currently in MP Steve Barclay’s North East Cambridgeshire constituency.
The BCE has consulted on its initial proposals for new parliamentary constituency boundaries across the country and ECDC has come up with a its response to the local proposals.
The nation-wide shake-up is designed to equal out the numbers of people in each constituency.
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The BCE suggests moving the two Littleport wards into the new South West Norfolk constituency, but ECDC feel this would not only go against statutory factors that must be taken into account such as local government boundaries, but would also break local ties.
It suggests keeping Littleport in North East Cambridgeshire by replacing the electorate lost to the new South West Norfolk constituency using other Norfolk communities. To accommodate Littleport voters in North East Cambs, ECDC say other communities including Chatteris should be moved to the North West Cambridgeshire and Huntingdon constituencies.
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They also have an alternative suggestion which would see Littleport and Chatteris remain in North East Cambs at the expense of moving Doddington and Wimblington into North West Cambs.
In a report ECDC officers said: “The council’s proposal reflects local government boundaries as Littleport remains in a constituency with other areas of Cambridgeshire and the Norfolk parliamentary constituencies are contained within the Norfolk county borders.
“It also follows the boundaries of the proposed combined authorities for these counties under devolution.”
The report goes on to say Littleport has been part of the North Cambs constituency since its creation in 1983 and “as part of Cambridgeshire County Council its community interests, identity and all local ties are with Cambridgeshire not Norfolk. All the public services Littleport residents access for example schools, police, waste collection are all within Cambridgeshire.”
The report concludes the proposal: “Reduces the number of constituencies in the eastern region that cross country boundaries to just one. This provides for effective and convenience government as it allows for the constituencies to be represented more effectively and there are also better links, in terms of public transport, within county boundaries than there are across them.”
The BCE is expected to publish the results of the consultation, which has now ended, this spring. Its final recommendations will be made in September 2018.