Almost 2,000 back petition to stop boundary changes splitting Ribble Valley
A petition launched earlier this week against the controversial proposals published by the Boundary Commisison to carve up the Ribble Valley has already gained 2,000 signatures.
As reported last week, under the plans, which are subject to consultation, the Ribble Valley seat would lose three wards - Whalley and Painter Wood; East Whalley Read and Simonstone; and Langho and Billington - to Hyndburn.
The proposals would see the new map come into force by 2024, ensuring all constituencies have an even number of voters between them.
County Coun. Ged Mirfin, who represents Whalley and Painter Wood, said: “There needs to be recognition by the authorities that this would represent a fundamental historical change of quite radical proportions if the Boundary Commission get their way. If this proposal gets passed it is likely to have further implications for the governance of the Ribble Valley. Very likely the question of an East Lancs Super Authority based on Blackburn will quickly raise its head with all that involves for Ribble Valley residents.
"Undoubtedly, this is the start rather than the end of a process. Quite simply by removing the three wards from the Ribble Valley Parliamentary Constituency, which is currently contiguous with Ribble Valley Borough Council, this is calling into question the long-term viability of the Borough Council.”
He added: "The process of boundary reform is fraught with danger. We need to seriously question whether we have learnt any lessons at all from the populist revolution that has taken place in our country. Forcing the population to adhere to political change without their explicit consent is an extremely dangerous proposition which has the potential to seriously rebound on the government.
"People are more than just numbers. The Boundary Commission needs to realise that you can’t simply create artificial electoral geographies without taking account of local identity and the political economy of place."
Anyone wishing to back the peition is asked to CLICK HERE