The Local Government Boundary Commission for England periodically reviews and decides on local electoral systems, and now it is Mole Valley’s turn in 1998.
It agrees the number of Councillors and the number and boundaries of Wards. Each Ward should have a similar number of electors, who should have the opportunity to vote at every election.
With elections three out of four years, only in Wards with three Councillors can electors vote each time.
The District now has 41 Councillors and 21 Wards, with one councillor in seven Wards; two councillors in eight wards and six councillors in three wards, so change is unavoidable.
If Council continues with elections three of four years, all Wards will need to have three Councillors.
The number of Councillors has to be divisible by three, implying 39 Councillors and just 13 Wards – combining and remodelling current Wards will be unavoidable.
Your Independent Councillors, with the Conservative Group, favoured all-out elections every four years, meaning smaller 1-Councillor Wards.
Even our request for some consultation with residents on these options was refused by the Liberal Democrat majority, so the three of four year cycle continues, and they voted to reduce the Councillors to 39.
The Ashtead wards are now facing a possible major change, perhaps from three two, and with six rather than seven Councillors – depending on how the boundaries are redrawn and if some adjacent areas are included.
A Cabinet Working Group, of which Ashtead Common Ward Independent David Hawksworth is a member, is developing a possible revised system of Wards to put before the Commission. However, any organization or individual is free to make submissions directly to the Commission.
The warding pattern the Commission decides on will take effect at the May 2023 elections.
You can find the Commission at this address: