The Boundary Commission have just issued their draft proposals for realigned constituencies across the Country, which if accepted should be in place for the next General Election.
For us in the broad Marlborough and surrounding area it would mean that we dissociate from Devizes. The current Devizes Constituency would be sliced up and Devizes would become part of a new Melksham & Devizes Constituency, whilst this area would be in the centre of a new ‘East Wiltshire’ Constituency, as shown in the map above.
Will this be accepted? No idea as yet, there will be other quite radical changes elsewhere in the Country so the debate is just about to start.
Regarding Devizes, the proposed Melksham & Devizes Constituency will be as above. This will include Bradford on Avon and Corsham as well, areas that were previously in North Wilts, whilst the redrawn Chippenham constituency will take in much of the former North Wilts and the villages immediately to the North of Devizes, such as Rowde, Roundway and Bromham.
Where this leaves James Gray, currently MP for North Wilts and Michelle Donelan, currently MP for Chippenham – no idea as the changes to these areas will be substantial.
Overall, a big change. Why? it’s about trying to make sure that all constituencies are of an equatable size, but already in Swindon and Wiltshire, all constituencies are in the 70-80,000 electorate population apart from Swindon North which is just over 82,000. At some point the reasoning will all become clear(er?).
Marlborough’s MP, Danny Kruger, currently member for the Devizes Constituency told marlborough.news: “I’m surprised to see how radical these proposals are and my initial reaction is dismay that Devizes could be cut off from Marlborough, Pewsey and Tidworth. I’ll examine the plans closely and consult constituents on what representations to make to the Boundary Commission.”
Constituency boundaries are never fixed, populations move and change in socio-demographic make-up, but this widespread set of proposals is more radical than most. The starting gun for the debate has just been fired….