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Montgomeryshire Parliamentary seat to remain

 
Created on 26/03/2020 @ 10:48
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The Montgomeryshire Parliamentary seat is to remain after the UK government dropped plans for a shake-up of MPs and boundaries.

Unveiled in 2016, the proposals included cutting Wales’ representation in Westminster from 40 to 29 MPs to allow a smaller House of Commons of 600 rather than 650 members.

But facing several hurdles – including some resistance from its own MP’s – the Government has now announced that it will not proceed with the plans, citing the extra workload that MPs now face due to Brexit.

If implemented, the plans would have seen the political map of North Wales change dramatically, which currently returns 11 MPs to London.

But proposing to reduce this to seven, it included merging South Clwyd and North Montgomeryshire running from Ruthin all the way down to Machynlleth.

South Montgomeryshire would have become part of Radnorshire.

Despite this Chloe Smith, a Minister of State for the Cabinet Office, told the Commons on Tuesday that future boundary changes were still proposed on the basis of retaining 650 MPs.

Among those welcoming this new development is campaign group, the Electoral Reform Society.

Its chief executive, Darren Hughes, said that slashing the number of MP’s would have “undermined the voices of ordinary people in Parliament and hurt democratic scrutiny”, describing it as “an executive power grab”.

But he went on to say: “Once the pandemic is over, we need a root and branch reform of how our democracy works in the UK.

“Without shrinking the size of the Government, cutting MPs would have done little more than enhance the already disproportionate power of ministers.

“Now that the Government have accepted the need for proper representation in the Commons, they must focus on reducing the number of unelected peers in the bloated House of Lords.

“At 800 members, it’s the biggest second chamber in the world and needs a genuine overhaul.”

 

By Gareth Williams, Local Democracy Reporting Service

 

 

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