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Electoral Boundary Review – URGENT APPEAL from Patrik Garten

Please see below from Patrik Garten,

Over the past months I kept you updated about the Electoral Boundary review. We are nearing the closing date of the second and FINAL public consultation.

Please help me to stop North Downs Ward getting joined with Harrietsham & Lenham Ward and (if you have not done so yet) please take part in the current public consultation, which can be found here:  — it closes this Wednesday !!!!!

Let me recap what happened so far:

The Electoral Commission heeded YOUR responses to the first consultation and refrained from splitting up North Downs Ward. We welcomed this decision, particularly the communities in the West of our ward.

Unfortunately, to make up the number of electors needed for a councillor to represent a ward, they suggested that North Downs ought to merge with Harrietsham and Lenham to form a 3 member super ward.

There is a major concern:

The representation, or lack of, of residents in the smaller communities: Will an elected councillor heed to the smaller communities when the bigger issues in Lenham are the real vote winners?

Any future politically-savvy councillor of any party colour will appreciate that it is easier to win large chunks of votes in the service centres/villages rather than in sparsely populated areas. The ‘work-effort-to-results-ratio’ is stacked against the sparsely-populated areas.

For that reason I devised a proposal how to keep North Downs Ward separate from Lenham and Harrietsham.  The Maidstone Council Democracy Committee accepted them unanimously last week and, subject to Full Council ratification next week, MBC will put these ideas to the Electoral Commission.  But

Please take 5 minutes and tell them YOUR opinion.
You don’t need to write much detail, merely state whether or not you like our ward to be merged into a super ward and why / or why not.  I attach my personal representations to this post (download below), which I will submit to the commission. (Feel free to copy & paste as much or as little as you see fit) I am confident that I speak for the vast majority of you, but your personal representations will count as much, if not more !

We have until Wednesday to save our ward !!!!!!!

Please share this email with your neighbours and friends and across your local netwok

Patrik Garten

MBC Cllr for North Downs Ward

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