Town could lose a borough councillor

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Garstang could lose one of its councillors if an independent review agrees proposals put forward by Wyre Council.

The Local Government Boundary Commission for England is asking local people, including borough and town councils, for their help to draw up a new pattern of council wards for Wyre Borough Council.

At the same time, the Commission has announced that it is minded reduce the total number of councillors representing the borough to 50, five fewer than the current arrangements. Wyre Council has carried out a borough-wide review, and suggests reducing the number of wards from 26 to 22.

In the Garstang area, it is suggesting Garstang, which has three councillors, would join with Cabus, which has one. The new ward would be called Garstang, but would have only three councillors, resulting in the loss of one seat.

Catterall and Brock would join and be renamed Brock with Catterall Ward. Each ward has one councillor and the new ward would have two. Calder would swallow up Forton, Nether Wyresdale and Bleasdale and be renamed Calderdale, with two councillors. Wyresdale and Calder currently have a councillor each.

Wyre Council says the reasoning is to achieve a situation where councillors each represent a higher number of electors than the average of 1,563 per councillor. The new proposals would give a ratio of one councillor to 1,774 voters.

A spokesman for Wyre Council said its proposals would now be considered by the commission, together with proposals put forward by people and groups across the area.

A commission spokesman said it was now down to the public and groups to make their views known.

He added: “In drawing up new boundaries, the commission aims to deliver electoral equality for voters in council elections so that each councillor represents roughly the same number of voters. The review also aims to ensure that the new council wards reflect, as far as possible, the interests and identities of communities across the borough.”

Commission chairman Max Caller said: “The starting point of an electoral review is for the commission to take a view on the number of councillors who should represent the authority in future.

“On the evidence presented to the commission, we are minded to recommend that Wyre should have 50 councillors in future.

“We are now asking local people and organisations to help us draw up new wards for the borough. As we develop the recommendations, we will take into account local community identities as well as ensuring electoral equality for voters.

“Your views will make a difference. We will carefully consider all evidence provided during this phase of the review, whoever it is from and whether it applies to the whole borough or just a small part of it.

“We will publish all the submissions on our website, so that local people can see all the various proposals we receive. Residents will then have a further chance to have their say after we publish our draft recommendations in June.”

l People have until April 8 to submit their views. Further information on the review and interactive maps of the existing wards can be found at consultation.lgbce.org.uk and www.lgbce.org.uk.