The Boundary Commission for England (BCE) is currently reviewing the parliamentary boundaries and is due to finish in 2023. It has published its initial proposals and is encouraging your feedback.
The requirements of the review
There are certain requirements that the BCE must meet when completing the review. These include:
- limiting the total number of parliamentary constituencies in the UK to 650
- applying a new distribution formula, which increases the number of constituencies in England from 533 to 543
- ensuring any new constituencies have an electorate of between 69,724 and 77,062 voters (excluding specific exceptions)
- allowing for geographical factors, such as the size, shape and accessibility of a constituency
- being aware of local ties that may break due to any changes
Current arrangements in Chelmsford
The Chelmsford City Council local authority area currently includes three Parliamentary constituencies:
- Chelmsford (electorate 80,394 all in the Chelmsford City Council area)
- Maldon (electorate 72,641, with around 32,402 from the Chelmsford City Council area)
- Saffron Walden (electorate 87,017 with around 18,539 from the Chelmsford City Council area)
These figures are from the 2019 UK Parliamentary election.
You can view a map showing the current boundaries, and check which area your address falls under.
The review has split the counties in the Eastern region into sub-regions, but Suffolk does not have an electorate high enough to create a sub-region. Therefore, the BCE proposes to merge Essex and Suffolk to create a sub-region, made up of 26 constituencies.
We have summarised the proposed changes for the residents in the Chelmsford City Council area below.
There is only one change proposed to the Chelmsford constituency. This is to move Galleywood ward (parliamentary electorate of 4,231) to the Maldon constituency.
This would bring the total electorate of the Chelmsford constituency in line with the new rules with a proposed electorate of 76,163.
The proposed changes to the Maldon constituency are to:
- add the Galleywood ward (as explained above)
- exclude the ward of Little Baddow, Danbury and Sandon (parliamentary electorate of 6,524), which would instead become part of the Braintree constituency
The BCE propose to move all four wards in the Saffron Walden constituency that are in the Chelmsford local authority area to the Braintree constituency.
The wards are:
- Chelmsford Rural West
- Boreham and The Leighs
- Broomfield and the Walthams
This includes a total of 18,783 parliamentary electors.
Responding to the consultation
We have prepared a response to this consultation, which was approved at the Full Council meeting on 21 July 2021.
You can view more details about the proposals in our region, although the consultation period is now closed.