Last week a Full Council meeting took place at Crawley Borough Council. The main item for debate was a vote on a preferred future warding pattern to formally submit as part of a local government boundary review that is taking place for Crawley Borough Council.
These reviews happen on average every fifteen years or so and happen because of changes in population, with there being a need to ensure each Council ward broadly has a similar electorate for purposes of fairness.
Unfortunately the term fairness is a very selective concept when it comes to my experience of Crawley’s Labour Councillors over recent years. I could recite several examples of Labour Councillors in Crawley promoting blatant unfairness for perceived political advantages but I will stick to just the latest topic, that being this Council boundary review.
Crawley is a town based on neighbourhoods and our local neighbourhoods fit very nicely with our local Council wards. In the past there has been agreement on this between both Conservative and Labour Councillors, but sadly now it seems that Labour’s desire for total political dominance at Crawley Borough Council takes precedence over what is best for Crawley’s neighbourhoods.
Last Wednesday’s Full Council meeting was shambolic with some Labour Councillors trotting out the most tenuous of statements in order to justify their ill-advised proposal to split the Three Bridges ward in two, which local residents in attendance were very much against.
Labour went on to formally propose what I can only describe as a ‘dog's breakfast’ for Broadfield, by splitting the neighbourhood three ways with one part being in with Gossops Green, another part being in with Bewbush and then what remains being a Broadfield ward. All four of Broadfield’s Labour Councillors voted for this.
Incredibly, Labour’s proposal for Council wards in and around Broadfield would mean that Broadfield Drive within Broadfield would become part of the ward boundary between Gossops Green and Bewbush. Confused? You will be if you live in Broadfield and if Labour’s plans which they forced through last week’s Full Council meeting are formally agreed by the Local Government Boundary Commission.
Councillor Duncan Crow, Leader of Crawley Borough Council Conservative Group
11th April 2018