Sunday, 17 May 2015

No to Devonwall seat

As the leader of MK, I have written to Cornwall’s six Conservative MPs and challenged them to oppose any attempts to create a cross-Tamar “Devonwall” seat.

This follows the announcement from senior Conservatives that the redrawing of parliamentary constituency boundaries is “at the top of the agenda for the new Conservative government.”

The new Conservative government plans to action the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act, which would lead to a ‘Devonwall seat, but Cornwall’s MPs are in a position to ensure that the legislation is revisited and the creation of a cross-Tamar constituency prevented.

The territorial integrity of Cornwall – a historic Celtic nation – must be protected and our future MPs must serve constituencies that lie entirely within the boundaries of Cornwall (and the Isles of Scilly).

It is also the case that the Cornish people have been recognised as a ‘national minority,’ which reinforces why the historic border of Cornwall should be treated the same as the historic borders of Scotland and Wales when it comes to the delineation of new constituencies.

Further information

In 2011, the Coalition Government voted through the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act. It reduced the number of parliamentary constituencies across the UK from 650 to 600 and sought to ensure that (almost) all seats had a population of within 5% of the average constituency size.

A consequence of the legislation was that it would lead to a cross-Tamar Devonwall seat. The boundary changes did not happen prior to the General Election because of a fall-out within the Coalition and the implementation of the Act was delayed until after 2015.

According to the Boundary Commission website, the Commission currently plans to formally begin working on the next review in the spring of 2016, with the intention of submitting its final recommendations to central government by the early autumn of 2018.

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