Hucknall councillors from all parties criticise plans to split the town in two
Councillors in Hucknall have criticised proposed changes to Parliamentary constituency boundaries that would split their town.
The Boundary Commission for England has proposed moving two Mansfield council wards – Grange Farm and Brick Kiln – into Ashfield constituency, and shifting Eastwood and Brinsley from Ashfield into Broxtowe constituency.
But at meeting of Ashfield District Council, councillors voted for controversial alternative plans put forward by the ruling Ashfield Independents.
The motion was passed despite fierce opposition from Hucknall councillors in Hucknall, including some members of the Ashfield Independents.
Coun Lee Waters (Ash Ind), who represents Hucknall North and voted against the proposed changes, said: “In theory it would make sense for pretty much all of Ashfield and Hucknall to be one constituency.
“However, I find myself in a bizarre position where I actually agree with Labour and the Conservatives – I’m not comfortable splitting Hucknall in two.”
Coun Keir Morrison (Lab), who represents Hucknall South, added: “People in Hucknall West see themselves as Hucknall people, not Ashfield residents.
"We’re all one town and we want to keep it that way.
“I won’t be supporting this, I don’t want to split the town up where I was born and bred, and I think this proposal needs scrapping immediately.”
Coun Chris Baron (Con), who works in the office of Ashfield MP Lee Anderson and represents Hucknall West, spoke out against the plans and then voted in favour of them.
He said: “I am totally against this plan and I even spoke for five minutes against it at the meeting."
Coun Jason Zadrozny, council leader, said: “I must make it clear that Ashfield District Council hasn’t instigated any of this.
"We are feeding into a process instigated by the Conservative Government."
Coun Zadrozny added that this was just the beginning of a two-year process and many more consultations and public meetings would take place before any final decisions are made.