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Boundary shake-up ‘absolutely barmy’

CARVING up the borough - so it’s represented by four MPs - will cause immense confusion, councillors have said.

CARVING up the borough - so it’s represented by four MPs - will cause immense confusion, councillors have said.

Last month, the Boundary Commission published details of a shake-up of parliamentary constituencies.

The changes were announced in an attempt to give almost every seat an electorate between 72,500 and 80,500.

But in areas like Solihull, this would mean joining together areas with little in common and, in many cases, crossing local council boundaries.

Solihull and Meriden would be altered, while other parts of the borough would be included in a new constituency - Kenilworth & Dorridge.

Castle Bromwich would be cut adrift from the rest of Solihull, becoming part of Birmingham Erdington.

At last week’s Full Council meeting, there were concerns raised from all sides of the chamber.

Councillor Ken Meeson, leader of Solihull Council, said: “I believe that right across the political spectrum, we’re not happy with what has been brought forward.

“This would fragment our borough, meaning that local people have one of four MPs - all of whom will have responsibilities outside Solihull.”

Nick Stephens (Lab, Chelmsley Wood) described the plans as “absolutely barmy” and said there should be a full debate on the issues.

And Lib Dem leader, Coun Ian Hedley, said that the Government had gone for the “dog’s breakfast option”.

“If you start tinkering with boundaries for just a few constituencies then it will have a knock on effect and you will have to change almost all of them. The question of ‘when will it end?’ has now been answered - at Land’s End and the Scottish border.”

Councillors agreed a cross-party meeting to discuss the controversial proposals.

 

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