Concerns over Dorset County Council boundaries

Cllr Ronald Coatsworth, right, and Simon Williams at the junction of St Andrews and Sea Road North

Cllr Ronald Coatsworth, right, and Simon Williams at the junction of St Andrews and Sea Road North

First published in News Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Dorchester reporter

CONCERNS have been raised ahead of a proposed review of Dorset County Council’s divisional boundaries.

Representatives of the Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) briefed members at a full meeting of the county council about plans for an electoral review of the authority.

Review manager Tim Bowden explained that the review was being launched because more than one third of Dorset’s divisions had an electoral variance of more than ten per cent.

He explained that the LGBCE would be inviting feedback from councillors, parishes and members of the public as it prepares to draw up a set of recommendations for the council.

A set of proposals will then go out to consultation in May next year and feedback will be considered before a final set of recommendations are put before parliament.

The whole review is expected to take around 18 months and the new divisions will come into force in the county elections in 2017.

Mr Bowden told members: “The commission has no pre-conceived ideas of the outcome of this review.

“We don’t have any idea of how many councillors there will be, we don’t have a blueprint of the map of what the new divisions will be in the county.

“One thing that will happen I can guarantee is things will change.”

A number of councillors who have recently experienced boundary reviews at a district level in Purbeck, West Dorset and North Dorset questioned whether the LGBCE will actually listen to representations they put forward.

Cllr Peter Wharf said: “I really do need, if I’m to take this seriously, some indication that you are going to listen to valid and well thought out plans that we make because my experience is so far you have not.”

Cllr Ronald Coatsworth added: “I’m very apprehensive about the future in West Dorset.

“You make up communities which don’t actually exist and you are not prepared to listen to the people.

“All I ask you to do is actually listen to what we want, we have got better ideas than you have.”

Lead commissioner for the review from the LGBCE Peter Knight said that the organisation had to balance a number of criteria and insisted that, while they would listen to all representations made, they may not always agree with the suggestions of local members.

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

3:29pm Mon 28 Apr 14

JamesYoung says...

Councillor Joe Bloggs said "I'm really concerned that this review might deprive me of my position as a councillor".
For heaven's sake, Wiltshire saved £85m by moving to a Unitary Authority, isn't it time we did the same?
Councillor Joe Bloggs said "I'm really concerned that this review might deprive me of my position as a councillor". For heaven's sake, Wiltshire saved £85m by moving to a Unitary Authority, isn't it time we did the same? JamesYoung
  • Score: 5

9:36pm Mon 28 Apr 14

Dorset Boy says...

JamesYoung wrote:
Councillor Joe Bloggs said "I'm really concerned that this review might deprive me of my position as a councillor".
For heaven's sake, Wiltshire saved £85m by moving to a Unitary Authority, isn't it time we did the same?
I've been saying 'One Unitary Authority' for years.
[quote][p][bold]JamesYoung[/bold] wrote: Councillor Joe Bloggs said "I'm really concerned that this review might deprive me of my position as a councillor". For heaven's sake, Wiltshire saved £85m by moving to a Unitary Authority, isn't it time we did the same?[/p][/quote]I've been saying 'One Unitary Authority' for years. Dorset Boy
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree