Councillors urge commission to save East Dunbartonshire!

East Dunbartonshire Council HQ
East Dunbartonshire Council HQ

Councillors are to ask the Boundary Commission to rethink a plan that could spell the end of East Dunbartonshire as a British parliamentary constituency.

The UK Parliament is reducing the number of constituencies from 650 to 600 and in Scotland that means a reduction from 59 to 53 constituencies.

If accepted, the changes would mean that the East Dunbartonshire constituency would effectively disappear, being split between two redrawn seats.

Part of the current constituency would be included in the new West Dunbartonshire & Bearsden North seat and part in the new Milngavie & Kirkintilloch seat.

The proposals were considered by the council at its meeting last Thursday (November 10) and councillors expressed concern that the proposed new constituencies did not align to council ward boundaries, dividing the area.

It was also felt that the proposed constituency name could be improved.

Council Leader Rhondda Geekie explained: “The proposed name for the predominant constituency in East Dunbartonshire is ‘Milngavie and Kirkintilloch County Constituency’ and we feel this does not reflect all of our population centres.

“All councillors agreed that we should propose that the Boundary Commission call the predominant constituency in this area ‘East Dunbartonshire County Constituency’.

“It was also agreed that the council’s political group leaders and other interested councillors would meet and discuss a joint council response reflecting that we strongly feel that all areas of East Dunbartonshire should be included within that East Dunbartonshire constituency rather than splitting wards and aligning them to an entirely different council area. ”

The Boundary Commission for Scotland published their proposals for the new UK Parliamentary constituencies in Scotland on 20 October and are conducting a 12 week consultation on these.

Any members of the public wishing to respond to the proposals can do so online, by 11 January, at: www.bcomm-scotland.independent.gov.uk/2018_Westminster/initial_proposals/maps/index.asp.