Cheshire East Council has backed changes to the governance of town and parish councils across the borough.
The decision to approve the recommendations of the council’s cross-party community governance review sub-committee was made during a vote at a meeting of the full council on 27th April, and follows a 12-week consultation which received around 5,000 responses from the public.
The changes recommended are the first made by Cheshire East Council since it was established in 2009 from former district councils within Cheshire, and is in line with government advice to review arrangements every 10-15 years.
Cheshire East Council has made minor changes to town council and parish boundaries across the borough, largely to respond to new housing or commercial developments that have crossed into neighbouring jurisdictions, or where this is likely to occur in future. Town council wards have also been redrawn across the borough, including in Bollington.
Proposals that would have seen Handforth Parish Council (which attracted national attention after a heated 2020 meeting on Zoom and now renamed Handforth Town Council) merged into Wilmslow Town Council have been scrapped.
Full details of the changes and maps showing boundary alterations can be found here.
Cllr Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council and chair of its corporate policy committee, said:
“This community governance review, including extensive consultation and engagement with stakeholders, was necessary to ensure that town and parish arrangements meet local needs and are fit for purpose for the future.
“The adoption of the review recommendations is the culmination of an incredibly complex and important project for the governance of the whole borough.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the officers and members of the cross-party community governance review sub-committee for their dedication and hard work – especially during the additional challenges of the Covid pandemic. I would also like to thank the many members of the public who contributed so much to help deliver a successful outcome of this process.
“The changes made to the proposals, following consultation, demonstrate that the council has listened.”
Parish and town councils have powers to manage parks, car parks, footpaths, community centres, cemeteries, and other local amenities within their boundaries, funded based on population from Council Tax and locally applied precepts. They also have statutory consultation rights on planning matters to represent local residents on proposed development.