West Dorset District Council is undertaking a review of the parish boundary between Symondsbury parish and the town council area, following a request from Bridport Town Council.
The town council believes the scale of the new development proposed for Vearse Farm (up to 800 new houses), which currently sits within the parish of Symondsbury, will have a significant impact on town services, particularly at a time when the Town Council, as part of the local government reorganisation, is looking at taking on more services that benefit the town and the wider area.
Also, the town council feels that the residents of the new dwellings at Vearse Farm will look to Bridport town parish for their services and community focus, which is the main criteria for a community governance review.
Councillor Sarah Williams, Leader of Bridport Town Council, said: “The town council has requested this review as the proposed residential development at Vearse Farm will increase pressure on services delivered by the Council.
“If the new residents are in the Bridport parish, the increased tax base would make a significant difference to the town council’s ability to deliver services in the town. This is an opportunity to ensure that this further extension of the town is included within the town’s boundary and to regularise the boundary on the western side of the town.
“The additional costs for town centre services should not all fall on the existing residents of Bridport parish. The town council has a good relationship with Symondsbury Parish Council and will continue to meet and work with the parish council at all stages of the review.”
The Town Council will make its decision on its preferred option at its meeting on 19 June at 7pm in Bridport Town Hall. The meeting is open to the public and there is an opportunity to speak at the meeting.
Symondsbury Parish Council will make its decision at its meeting on Tuesday 10 July at Symondsbury Primary School at 7pm. This meeting is open to the public.
Symondsbury councillor John Tinker said: “We welcome our parishioners to the meeting and hope they will make their views known.”
Public representations on this or any alternative submissions, as part of the review, can be made direct to West Dorset District Council by 11 July 2018 (the deadline has been extended by a week) and may be sent by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or to Bridport Community Governance Review, Democratic and Electoral Services, West Dorset District Council, South Walks House, South Walks Road, Dorchester DT1 1UZ.
If you would like more information on the town council’s proposed submission contact Bob Gillis Town Clerk at email@example.com or 01308 456722.
The district council will consider all the representations received and then draw up its recommendations, which will be subject to further public consultation later in the year. If there are any changes to the boundaries, then these would be introduced from the local elections in May 2019.