Moves by the Local Government Boundary Commission to take Shortbridge out of a Danehill and Fletching Ward and include it in a West Uckfield and Isfield Ward are likely to be opposed by Wealden District Council.
A council working group is concerned that splitting Piltdown, which includes Shortbridge, would lead to confusion among the electorate and recommends the council responds saying as much to the Local Government Boundary Commission.
The working group report is to be considered by Cabinet at a meeting on Wednesday, April 20.
The Local Government Boundary Commission suggestion came following proposals submitted by Wealden councillors for new electoral ward boundaries in the district. See: District voting areas set to change in Uckfield.
The council working group says: “The locality of Piltdown (which includes Shortbridge) is very much a defined community, having a vibrant residents’ association that works very closely with the local district ward members as well as the parish council to achieve a number of projects that benefit the area as a whole.
“The council is concerned that splitting Piltdown across two district wards to the extent that is proposed would lead to confusion amongst the electorate, who associate themselves much more closely with the rural area of Fletching than the urban area of Uckfield.
“It would also lead to duplication of effort by groups such as the residents’ association who would now have to deal with district councillors from two different wards.
“The council therefore requests that the ward boundary originally proposed by Wealden be adopted as keeping the community of Piltdown together in one ward, outweighed creating a small ward of Fletching parish.”
Cabinet members are reminded that the review does not change the boundaries of any parish councils and in those areas where a parish is split across district ward boundaries the only change the electorate will experience is that they will be represented at the district level by a different councillor.
They will still go to vote at the same polling station as they currently do.
The working group has agreed with other Boundary Commission recommendations for wards in the Uckfield area which include:
Buxted: The parish of Buxted, excluding the Coopers Green area in the far south-west.
Danehill and Fletching: The parish of Danehill, the parish of Fletching excluding Shortbridge, and the rural western part of the Forest Row parish. The exclusion of Shortbridge is opposed by a Wealden Council working group, see story above.
Hadlow Down and Rotherfield: The parish of Hadlow Down and the southern part of the parish of Rotherfield.
Maresfield: The entire parish of Maresfield
Framfield and Cross-in-Hand: The parish of Framfield and the Cross-in-Hand area of Heathfield and Waldron Parish.
Uckfield East: The eastern area of Uckfield, north of the railway line and east of High Street.
Uckfield New Town: South-eastern area of Uckfield, south of the railway line and east of Eastbourne Road.
Uckfield North: The northern area of the town, along with the Coopers Green area of Buxted parish.
Uckfield, Ridgewood and Little Horsted: The Ridgewood area of Uckfield, along with the parish of Little Horsted.
Uckfield West and Isfield: Comprising the western area of the town, along with the Shortbridge area of Fletching parish and the parish of Isfield. Wealden Council’s working group is opposed to including the Shortbridge area in the Uckfield West and Isfield ward, see above.