The Boundary Commission for England (BCE) is once again asking the public to help shape plans to change Parliamentary constituency boundaries as it opens its second consultation.
Following a decision by Parliament to reduce the number of constituencies in the UK to 600 from 650, and to ensure that the number of electors in each constituency is equal, the BCE has been asked to make independent recommendations about where the boundaries of English constituencies should be.
An initial 12-week consultation was held in the autumn last year, giving the public the first chance to view and comment on the BCE’s plans. Almost 20,000 responses were received, which have now been published as part of the second consultation.
Sam Hartley, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for England, said:
“Public input is invaluable throughout the 2018 Boundary Review. Comments made during both consultations will help us develop a well-rounded picture of how local communities live and work together across the country. This local knowledge will be essential when we revise our proposals. Any changes will be based on your comments so it’s important to have your say.”
Until 27 March 2017 residents will be able to go to the BCE’s consultation website, www.bce2018.org.uk, to view the public comments received during the first consultation. Residents also have an opportunity to say what they think about other suggestions made during that consultation, support counter-proposals, highlight issues with alternative ideas and say if they think BCE’s original proposals are still the best solution.
Laureen Donnan, Deputy Chief Executive at Stockport Council, said:
“This is a chance for Stockport residents to view the suggestions made by the Boundary Commission for England and give their views on the proposed new constituency boundaries.”
Following the second consultation, the BCE’s assistant commissioners will look through all comments received during both consultations, considering all the evidence submitted. They will then advise the Commission on where they think the proposals should be revised.
Revised proposals will be published as part of a final consultation in late 2017/early 2018
BCE must report to Parliament with its final recommendation in September 2018. If agreed by Parliament, the new constituencies will be in use at the next scheduled General Election in 2020.
It is easier than ever to get involved, by using the BCE’s website
The consultation closes on 27 March. More information is available on the BCE’s website and Twitter feed @BCE2018.