The Boundary Commission for England (BCE) has published its initial proposals for new constituency boundaries today (8 June 2021). The public are now able to view and provide feedback on the proposed constituencies as part of an eight-week consultation process.
Under the proposals the Beeston & Holbeck and Hunslet & Riverside council wards would remain within the Leeds Central parliamentary constituency, currently held by Hilary Benn (Labour). However, Middleton Park ward which includes Belle Isle and Middleton, would move to a renamed ‘Morley’ constituency.
The Morley consituency would stretch from Drighlington to Lofthouse and would include Morley, East and West Ardsley as well as Belle Isle and Middleton. One of the resons for the change is the growth of people living in the city centre and riverside areas. The current constituency of Morley & Outwood is held by Andrea Jenkyns (Conservative).
The 2023 Review of Parliamentary constituencies was formally launched in January this year. The Commission is required to ensure that the number of electors in each constituency is more equal; in doing so, the number of constituencies in England will increase from 533 to 543. The Commission is undertaking an independent review of all constituency boundaries in England and will present final recommendations to Parliament by July 2023.
Publication of the initial proposals today is the first time people get to see what the map of new constituencies might look like. The rules that the Commission work to are such that wide scale change is inevitable. Under the proposals announced today, just under 10% of the existing 533 English constituencies remain unchanged.
Members of the public are encouraged to visit www.bcereviews.org.uk to view maps showing the proposed new boundaries and provide feedback before the consultation closes on 2 August 2021. People can comment on anything from where the proposed new boundary lines are to the names of the constituencies. There will be a further two rounds of consultation in 2022. Following the conclusion of all three consultation periods, the Commission will look at all the evidence received and form its final recommendations.
Tim Bowden, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for England, said:
“Today’s proposals mark the first time people get to see what the new map of Parliamentary constituencies might look like. But they are just the Commission’s initial thoughts. Help us draw the line to make the number of electors in each Parliamentary constituency more equal. Each constituency we recommend is required by law to contain between 69,724 and 77,062 electors, meaning there will be significant change to current boundaries. We want to hear the views of the public to ensure that we get the new boundaries for Parliamentary constituencies right.
“We consider all feedback received during the consultation process, and it is your local knowledge that helps us to shape constituencies that best reflect your local area. It is easy to get involved – view our proposals and have your say on our online consultation portal – www.bcereviews.org.uk.”
This post is based on a press release issued by the Boundary Commission for England