People in St Neots are being urged to protest against proposals to redraw the town’s boundaries - a plan that would see large areas of Eaton Ford moved to another electoral ward.
Cambridgeshire County Council submitted the proposals to the Boundary Commission for England last year, as part of a review which also suggested the number of county councillors should be reduced from four to three.
The recommendations are to ‘move’ the Milton Avenue estate, Crosshall Road and Savilles Close to the Priory Park and Little Paxton ward, which has led to hundreds of complaints from voters.
The town’s new mayor, Derek Giles, who is a town councillor for Eaton Ford, and his wife, Sandie, a district councillor for Eaton Ford, have handed in the petition, with more than 200 signatures, to the Boundary Commission, but there is still time for people to register their objections.
“The ‘Eatons’ has always had its own identity and it is the potential loss of this identity, among other things, that has got the residents extremely worried and rather irritated,” said Cllr Derek Giles.
“Eaton Ford has always had its own Methodist Chapel and there are various organisations and clubs, as well as shops and businesses - and the sense of community spirit is a very real thing here. It just does not make sense to take part of Eaton Ford and move it across the river.”
The Boundary Commission has responded to complaints, however, and agreed to reopen the consultation period.
“The commission has acknowledged that despite following a statutory procedure, some residents and groups consider there had been insufficient opportunity for their views to be communicated. The commission has an open mind about potential changes and welcomes views,” a spokesman said.
The consultation period is open till June 20 and the commission will publish its final recommendations in September.
“Eaton Socon and Eaton Ford has been a community with its own identity for several centuries, we want to keep Eaton Ford intact and not have it moved as part of a number juggling exercise,” said Cllr Sandie Giles.
“We need to revert back to the three divisions of Eynesbury, Priory and Little Paxton and The Eatons, which we know works well and is easily manageable.”
INFO: Make your views known by writing to: The Review Officer (Cambridgeshire) Local Government Boundary Commission for England, 14th Floor, Milbank Tower, London, SW1P 4QP. Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.