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Local electoral arrangements finalised for Cambridgeshire County Council

6th September 2016

The independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England has published its final recommendations for new electoral arrangements for Cambridgeshire County Council.

Today’s publication follows consultation on its draft proposals in May and draws new boundaries for each county electoral division across Cambridgeshire.

The Commission’s final recommendations propose that Cambridgeshire should be represented by 61 county councillors in the future: eight fewer than the current arrangement. The recommendations also propose that those councillors should represent 57 single-member electoral divisions and two two-member electoral divisions across the county.

Professor Colin Mellors, Chair of the Commission, said, “We are extremely grateful to people across Cambridgeshire who took the time and effort to send us their views over several rounds of consultation. The Commission considered every piece of evidence it received before finalising these recommendations.

“Across the county, we have sought to balance the views expressed to us by local people with the criteria we must apply when we are deciding on new electoral arrangements. As such, we believe these recommendations deliver electoral equality for voters as well as reflecting the identities of communities in Cambridgeshire.”

In response to representations made to it during consultation, the Commission has made changes to the draft proposals it put forward for consultation in May. For example, in Cambridge city, the Commission has changed its boundary between Abbey and Petersfield divisions to reflect local views on community ties in that part of the city. Roads adjoining Abbey Walk, St Matthew’s Gardens and part of Sturton Street will be part of the Petersfield division and not Abbey division as previously proposed.

In Cambridge, the Commission had also previously proposed a Trumpington & Queen Edith’s electoral division to be represented by two county councillors. In light of local feedback, the Commission has amended its proposals so that the area will be represented by two divisions represented by one county councillor each.  

In East Cambridgeshire, the Commission has altered its proposals throughout the district. In response to local views, it has amended its previous recommendation to divide Littleport between electoral divisions. Instead, the Commission’s final recommendations propose to include the parish, in its entirety, in a Littleport division.

The Commission has also amended its proposals for Ely. Its previous recommendations had included part of Ely and its rural hinterland in a division with Soham and Littleport. The Commission’s final recommendations ensure that Ely is represented by two electoral divisions which match the parish boundary and therefore do not include other parts of the district as had been put forward under the previous recommendations.

For Soham, the Commission’s final recommendations propose a Soham North & Isleham division alongside a Soham South & Haddenham division which includes the south of the town and parishes to its west. After considering all the evidence presented to it, the Commission believes its recommendations better reflect local community ties and identities.

In Huntingdonshire district, the Commission has amended its recommendations so that the Eaton Ford area is not divided between electoral divisions. Eaton Ford will now be wholly contained within the St Neots The Eatons electoral division. Local representations about community ties around St Neots has persuaded the Commission to amend its proposed boundaries.  

Full details of the final recommendations are available on the Commission’s website at www.lgbce.org.uk.

The proposed new arrangements must now be implemented by Parliament. A draft order – the legal document which brings into force the recommendations – will be laid in Parliament in the coming months. The draft Order provides for the new electoral arrangements to come into force at the county council elections in 2017.

Ends

For further information contact the Commission’s press office on: 0330 500 1250 / 1525 or email: press@lgbce.org.uk

Notes to editors:

1.    The Local Government Boundary Commission for England is responsible for reviewing local authority electoral arrangements, e.g. defining boundaries for local elections and the number of councillors to be elected and – separately - for conducting reviews of local government external boundaries and structure.

2.    Full details of the Commission’s final recommendations (including maps) can be viewed at: www.lgbce.org.uk/current-reviews/eastern/cambridgeshire/cambridgeshire-county-council
Or: https://consultation.lgbce.org.uk/node/4143