Following an extensive open consultation, the Boundary Commission have published their proposed ward boundaries for Medway, which if adopted will be in place for the 2023 local elections.
Boundary reviews are required periodically to ensure each part of the authority has roughly equal representation. As the current boundaries were adopted in 2003, this means some areas of Medway are under or over represented as population numbers has changed.
Various stakeholders were invited to submit their own proposals for the boundaries, in order to ensure that the lines represent distinct communities. While several organisations, parish councils, and the odd local resident did so, the two primary submissions came from the Medway Conservatives and the Medway Labour Party, with some elements from each of their proposals make it into the proposed boundaries.
The full documents and maps related to the proposals can be found on the Boundary Commission website. Below we’ll highlight some of the changes that stand out the most:
The largest change will see Medway gain five new councillors, moving from 55 councillors across 22 wards to 60 councillors across 24 wards.
We would see more single councillor wards. St. Mary’s Island, All Saints (covering Stoke, Allhallows, and Grain), and Fort Horsted (covering Davis Estate) would all be represented by a single councillor.
Conversely, the only existing single councillor ward – Cuxton and Halling – would be absorbed into a beast of a ward including the two villages and swathes of Strood right up to the High Street.
Both Rochester wards would increase from two to three councillors, while a new Intra ward would merge parts of the old Rochester South and Horsted ward along with parts of Chatham Central.
There’s lots of pour over in these proposals, so please let us know if you spot anything interesting. If you’d like to offer any feedback on these proposals, you have until September 7 to do so via the Boundary Commission.