The Boundary Review

gloucester-constituency

Boundary Commission proposals for new Parliamentary constituencies will affect the way some of us vote in the 2020 general election.

They reduce the number of constituencies from 650 to 600 and alter the boundaries of almost all – including Gloucester.

For Gloucester the current proposal has three elements – no more mention of any Westgate residents voting in the Forest of Dean: the return of Longlevens residents to vote for a Gloucester MP and Quedgeley voters being asked to vote in the constituency of Stroud.

I’m so glad the Boundary Commission explicitly recognised Westgate Ward is in the heart of our city, not a fringe in the north as they originally assumed in 2011. I campaigned hard with some of you to put a stop to that and they have heard us loud and clear.

But because Gloucester has over 5% of the maximum number of voters allowed I knew something would have to give, especially if Longlevens residents vote in Gloucester. The proposal for Quedgeley voters to transfer to Stroud is, however sad, at least logical (in a way the Westgate idea never was).

Apart from personal regret, the issue is a disconnect between where voters vote in local and national elections – Quedgeley is still part of Gloucester City but not my constituency.

True Quedgeley has bounced to and fro between Stroud District Council and Gloucester City Council over the years, but as I understand it there is no plan proposing current council boundaries be changed at the moment.

On the other hand I suspect few people living in Longlevens would choose to vote in the constituency of Tewkesbury rather than Gloucester, where they vote in local elections. The more Longlevens residents that write to the Boundaries Commission to say so the better.

Which brings me to the next step. These are only initial proposals and the consultation runs until the 5th December. You can comment on the Commission’s consultation website here: www.bce2018.

Meanwhile it’s business as usual and I will continue to help ALL constituents in Quedgeley for at least the next four years.

Let me know what you think about this on richard.graham.mp@parliament.uk.

Best regards

Richard