Local government in Dorset is set to change next year following the release of final recommendations for ward boundaries of the future Dorset Council by the Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE).
The new Dorset Council which covers the western part of the county will replace Dorset County Council as well as North Dorset, East Dorset, West Dorset Purbeck, Weymouth and Portland district councils.
The recommendations created new wards with 82 councillors and will take effect at the council’s first elections next year. The final recommendations adopted by the commission propose six three-councillor wards, 18 two-councillor wards and 28 one-councillor wards.
Under the new arrangement, Lyme Regis and Charmouth will become a one-councillor ward, Bridport will become a three-councillor ward, and Marshwood Vale, Beaminster, Eggardon and Chesil Bank will become one-councillor wards each.
“We are grateful to everyone who took the opportunity to have their say on how they should be represented in the future. We looked carefully at every submission we received before finalising the recommendations – Professor Colin Mellors, chairman of the LGBCE, said in a statement.
“We think this pattern of wards strikes the right balance between delivering fairness for voters as well as reflecting the shape of communities across Dorset.” The statement added.
The new arrangements must now be implemented by parliament while the draft order – the legal document that enforces the recommendation – will be laid in parliament in the coming weeks. The draft order allows the arrangements to come into force at the authority’s first elections in 2019.