5 CBC Councillors For Houghton Regis: Have Your Say

New boundaries are being proposed for council wards in Central Bedfordshire.

This stage of the consultation closes on 7 September 2020

The Local Government Boundary Commission wants to hear what residents and local organisations think about the proposals. A 10-week consultation on the proposals will run until 7 September 2020.

The proposals include that the old boundaries of Tithe Farm, Parkside and Houghton Hall are discontinued in terms of areas that ward CBC councillors cover.

Instead, Houghton Regis would be carved up into new wards, broadly similar to now, of Houghton Regis East, and Houghton Regis West. And part of the existing Dunstable Northfields ward would be moved into Houghton Regis West.

Proposed ward boundaries:

Follow the link below to enlarge this map*.

Every street east of Bedford Road would be in Houghton Regis East.  Every street south of the High Street from The Chequers to The Kings Arms would be Houghton Regis West. Every street west of Windsor Drive would be Houghton Regis West; every street east of Windsor Drive, including the Painters estate and the Royal estate would be Houghton Regis East. Every street from Thorn to Capron Road, west of High Street North, would be in Houghton Regis West. The hamlet of Sewell, would be in Houghton Regis West.

Northfields, Houghton Road, Olma Road, Capron Road, all currently in Dunstable Northfields ward, would become part of Houghton Regis West.


  • Dunstable wards would be changing too, although broadly on the same boundaries as now. The area served as Dunstable Central would disappear to be carved up between the newly labelled wards of Dunstable North, Dunstable South, and Dunstable East.
  • Dunstable Icknield, Dunstable Manshead and part of Dunstable Central would be merged into a supersized Dunstable East.

What we have now:

Follow the link below to enlarge this map*.

Why The Changes Are Needed

The Commission is the independent body that draws these boundaries. It is reviewing Central Bedfordshire to make sure councillors will represent about the same number of electors, and those ward arrangements will help the council work effectively.

The Commission has published proposals for changes to Central Bedfordshire. It is proposing that there should be 12 three-councillor wards, 10 two-councillor wards and seven one-councillor wards. 18 wards should change and 11 will stay the same.

The new Houghton Regis West ward would have 2 CBC councillors, present electorate of 4924, and a forecast electorate of 6464. Houghton Regis East ward would have 3 CBC councillors, a present electorate of 8873, and a forecast electorate of 10146.

The Commission is proposing that the parishes of Henlow and Stondon be placed together in Clifton, Henlow and Langford ward. The Commission was persuaded by the evidence that demonstrated community links between these parishes.

Houghton Conquest and Haynes and Northill wards will remain the same after the Commission received strong evidence arguing that any change to these wards would damage strong community ties in this area.

Help Us

Launching the consultation Professor Colin Mellors, Chair of the Commission, said:

“We want people in Central Bedfordshire to help us.

“We have drawn up proposals for new wards in Central Bedfordshire. We want to make sure these new electoral arrangements reflect communities. We also want them to be easy to understand and convenient for local people.

“Residents and local organisations can help us do that. We would like them to let us know whether they agree with our proposals before we take final decisions.

“It’s easy to get involved. Go to our website. Or you can e-mail or write to us.

“Just tell us what you think and give us some details about why you think that. It’s really simple, so do get involved”

The Commission has a dedicated section on its website where people can see the detail of the proposals and comment on the names of wards, their boundaries and the number of councillors per ward - https://consultation.lgbce.org.uk/have-your-say/18789

How to Comment

People can also give their views by e-mail at reviews@lgbce.org.uk, and by post:

Review Officer (Central Bedfordshire)

LGBCE c/o Cleardata
Innovation House
Coniston Court
Riverside Business Park
Blyth
NE24 4RP

* The map above can be expanded at the consultation link.

EDITORIAL COMMENT

These proposals are a missed opportunity to divide the areas into  wards of equal numbers of the electorate that a single CBC councillor could serve. If they were divided like this, it would avoid the potential of duplication of effort by councillors, make it easier for an individual to run their own campaign, and pay for leaflets, etc, and in the eventuality of a bye-election, fewer polling stations would need to have to reopen.

Where you have 2 or 3 councillors representing a ward the councillor that works hardest becomes the go-to councillor and that person becomes over-burdened; the slacker or slackers have an easier ride to collect their attendance and peripheral expenses.

That said, the commission's proposals for Dunstable and Houghton Regis keep more or less to existing town boundaries. Northfields and Houghton Road are moved into Houghton Regis West, but for the time being will continue to have Dunstable Town councillors.

All in all, if these proposals are accepted, I don't think the changes will have any great impact on the way things are done now, or on the electorate in general.



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