Have your say on ward boundaries

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Voters are being invited to air their views about proposed boundary changes in Lancaster.

While the number of councillors will remain the same, some wards may end up with more, or fewer, representatives.

Original proposals last year to cut the number of councillors from 60 by as much as a third were withdrawn following strong objections.

But now the Local Government Boundary Commission for England wants feedback on its draft plan of the new ward boundaries.

These should ensure that each councillor represents roughly the same number of voters - the average for Lancaster being 1,816.

Wards affected by new boundaries include, among others, Harbour and Heysham South, both of which are currently represented by three councillors.

Coun Eileen Blamire, one of three councillors in John O’Gaunt ward, said: “Basing the changes on either the geography or the number of residents can be very misleading because of the amount of work in a more deprived ward can be enormous compared to another more affluent ward with the same number of voters.

“I’m concerned that a lot of people might be unaware of what could happen if the boundaries change. I’d urge them to make their feelings known.”

Max Caller CBE, Chair of the Commission, said: “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 the Lancaster area and that the pattern of wards can help the council deliver effective local government to local people.

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

Residents have until March 18 to put forward their views and can do so by emailing reviews@lgbce.org.uk or through the web page http://consultation.lgbce.org.uk

Maps showing existing and proposed boundaries are also available on this site.

The consultation is open to anyone in the Lancaster area who wants to comment.