Chloe Smith does not want the Wensum ward in boundary shake up
- Credit: Archant
Chloe Smith has told boundary officials she does not want to be the MP for the Wensum area of the city after the next general election.
Under proposals being weighed up by the government, the Wensum ward, which includes a stretch of Dereham Road and all of Bowthorpe Road, would move from Clive Lewis' Norwich South constituency into her Norwich North constituency.
Ms Smith said the ward was a 'long-established part of Norwich South' because it is south of the river. She said people living in the area looked to the city centre for amenities rather than to the other shopping zones and out-of-town retail parks. She has told boundary officials that she instead wants to re-claim Drayton and Taverham, which moved into Broadland MP Keith Simpson's constituency in 2010.
Her comments were made in the first stage of a public consultation into proposed new constituency borders which will reduce the number of MPs in the House of Commons from 650 to 600. Green councillor Richard Bearman also responded to the consultation and agreed Wensum should remain in Norwich South, and called for the Sewell ward to move from Norwich North to South.
A second stage of the consultation has begun. The submissions, including Ms Smith's, can be viewed and commented on via the Boundary Commission England website, www.bce2018.org.uk until March 27.
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People living in the areas affected are able to support counter-proposals, highlight issues with alternative ideas and say where they think the BCE's original proposals are the best solution.
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.'
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Revised proposals will be published as part of a final consultation in later this year or early next year based on the comments made and are likely to form the boundaries of a 2020 general election.