Rugby politicians voice their opinions on proposed boundary changes

Mark Pawsey.
Mark Pawsey.

It’s all change yet again for the area covered by Rugby’s MP if plans to adjust the parliamentary constituency boundaries go ahead.

The proposals were published on Tuesday morning by the Boundary Commission for England. They have come as part of the Government’s plans to reduce the number of constituencies in the West Midlands from 59 to 53 and to reduce the number of MPs from 650 to 600.

The changes would see Rugby regain Dunchurch from the Kenilworth and Southam constituency and add a host of villages miles away in Stratford district.

But it would lose Long Lawford and a number of other Rugby borough wards to Nuneaton.

Rugby’s MP Mark Pawsey said: “I fully understand why these changes are being proposed and I support making the system fairer and more equal across the country.

“I also welcome the inclusion of villages such as Dunchurch within the new Rugby and Southam constituency proposals. I am, however, disappointed to see that other villages to the north of the town, such as Long Lawford, would no longer be part of the newly- formed constituency.”

In addition to Wolston and the Lawfords, Rugby would lose Wolvey and Shilton and Revel and Binley Woods wards.

Rugby would also gain seven wards from Stratford-district: Bishop’s Itchington, Harbury, Kineton, Long Itchington and Stockton, Napton and Fenny Compton, Southam North and Southam South.

Cllr Steven Birkett, who represents New Bilton ward on Rugby Borough Council, said: “The new boundary proposals will see villages with long established connections to Rugby, such as Long Lawford, removed from the constituency, whilst others closer to Stratford are added.”

Pete McLaren, spokesperson for Rugby’s Trade Union and Socialist Coalition, also spoke out. He said: “As a resident of Long Lawford, I feel very much part of Rugby which, of course, is only a mile down the road. Nuneaton is 15 miles away.

“Whilst accepting the need, nationally, to try and equalise constituency boundaries, moving Long Lawford from the Rugby to the Nuneaton constituency makes no sense at all.”

A 12-week consultation period is under way. A hearing will be held at the Royal Pump Room in Leamington on Thursday, November 10 from 10am-8pm and on Friday, November 11 from 9am-5pm.