Boundary Review 2018 – Act NOW!

Boundary_Changes

2018 Boundary Review – Consultation:

The Boundary Commission’s proposals are to move the ward of Windlesham from the Surrey Heath Constituency to the Windsor Constituency as part of the 2018 Boundary Review.  It is particularly unfortunate that this proposal has come at such a late stage, with no further public hearings but you still have until the 11th December 2017 to make your views known.

If this was to take place it would mean that Windlesham residents would be voting in the Parliamentary Elections for an MP responsible for the Windsor consistency based in the neighbouring County of Berkshire and we would be relying on support from an MP with no ties or relationship with Surrey Heath let alone our village of Windlesham.

Windlesham is an integral part of Surrey Heath and shares particularly close local ties with the neighbouring villages of Bagshot and Lightwater and with the major population centre of Camberley.  These ties include NHS services, education, leisure and other local services, local government representation and simple geography.

The ties of local government representation that would be split by this proposal go well beyond what would normally be deemed reasonable.  Not only would a County boundary be crossed but, more importantly, Windlesham shares a Parish Council with the fellow villages of Bagshot and Lightwater.  It is difficult to think of a clearer example of the severing of local ties than to divide a Parish between parliamentary constituencies.

In addition, a recent local government boundary review of Surrey Heath Borough Council will merge the Windlesham Ward with that of Chobham at the 2019 local elections. The current proposal, to place the Windlesham ward in the Windsor constituency, would cross a county boundary, divide a County Council Division, divide a future Borough Council Ward and divide a Parish Council.

The Member of Parliament for Surrey Heath has his constituency office in Windlesham, whereas the Member of Parliament for Windsor has his local office in Windsor.  If a Windlesham resident wishes to meet their elected representative at his office it currently requires a journey of just five minutes, however to reach Windsor takes at least 30 minutes by car in good traffic, by train it is over an hour and requires changing at both Ascot and Staines.

The Member of Parliament for Surrey Heath has worked closely with the Windlesham Society on the recent M3 Smart Motorway Project and was instrumental in helping secure the quieter road surfacing to be included in the project. He also supports the work of Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue and the Save Me Trust who are based in Windlesham and Harper Asprey is also one of the Mayor of Surrey Heaths charities for this year. Removing Windlesham from Surrey Heath will make it much harder for charities, campaigners and community groups to thrive locally.

In Summary:

  • Windlesham is part of a Parish Council of three villages
  • Windlesham gets its services from Surrey Heath and Surrey County Councils
  • Windlesham is in Surrey NOT Berkshire
  • Windlesham is home to the Surrey Heath constituency office
  • Windlesham enjoys the support of both their MP and Mayor of Surrey Heath
  • There are less disruptive solutions available by moving wards already within Berkshire which meet the commissions objective

To have your say please go to www.bce2018.org.uk enter your postcode and click on “Make a Comment”. Once you have clicked on your location on the map you will be asked to fill in your details and add your comment.

A paper based petition was launched in early November for residents not online in local outlets but will be collected up by the first week of December to ensure submission by the deadline.