Plan to extend West Norfolk parliamentary seat into Cambridgeshire moves a step closer

Election  at Lynnsport King's Lynn
Elizabeth Truss
Election at Lynnsport King's Lynn Elizabeth Truss
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A new consultation has been launched on planned boundary changes that could see one of a West Norfolk parliamentary constituency cross the border into Cambridgeshire.

The idea of extending the South West Norfolk constituency, currently represented by Elizabeth Truss, to include the town of Littleport was first put forward more than a year ago.

But it has now moved a step closer after it was included in revised proposals for new electoral boundaries in the region.

And a new report, published this week, has also proposed changing the constituency’s name to Thetford and Downham Market.

The document said: “This name reflects the largest settlements in the constituency, and the links of the Cambridgeshire wards to the town of Downham Market.”

The proposals have been drawn up as part of a national review, which is intended to cut the number of MPs elected to the House of Commons to 600 from the present 650 and ensure a broadly equal number of voters, between 71,000 and 78,000, in each constituency.

Boundary Commission officials say they were forced to draw boundaries across the county border, because there were not enough voters to meet that criteria.

But they rejected two alternative proposals which would have put Downham in the same constituency as Wisbech, or into a new seat with Littleport and Ely, arguing they would create too much disruption

The proposals would also see the Walton ward, covering the villages of Walpole Highway and West Walton, move into the North West Norfolk constituency.

A new public consultation on the proposals began on Tuesday and will continue until December 11. Final proposals are then expected to be published next autumn.

To take part, visit www.bce2018.org.uk or write to the Boundary Commission for England, 35 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BQ.