Humberside

Hull boundary change commission begins research

East Yorkshire sign
Image caption The Hands Off The East Riding campaign claim the area would lose facilities if the change goes ahead

An independent commission looking into whether or not Hull should extend its boundary has begun its research.

Hull City Council wants to extend its boundary to include places like Hedon, Willerby and Cottingham in East Yorkshire.

The research panel will assess the economic impact of such changes. A referendum on the issue is also taking place in the East Riding.

Opponents of the scheme have launched a campaign against the plans.

The commission is made up of 10 appointees from the public and private sector across both Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire.

'Concerns addressed'

A question and answer document produced by Hull City Council is designed to address concerns among residents and businesses.

In it, the authority said it was "building on the [employment] momentum generated by Siemens in the city, the port's City of Culture status and other achievements".

The change, it said, would "boost investment, create jobs and secure adequate funding for local services".

The Hands Off The East Riding campaign claims the East Riding would lose facilities if the change goes ahead.

The Mayor of Hedon, Conservative councillor John Dennis, said residents in East Yorkshire would lose their identity if they became part of Hull.

He said: "If we don't get the majority of the people in the East Riding engaging in the campaign and actually joining in with the referendum then Hull City Council will regard that as a lack of interest."

Labour-run Hull City Council's commission is to look at four options:

  • merging the two existing authorities
  • combining some council functions
  • extending the city boundary to bordering built-up areas
  • extending the boundary into travel-to-work areas as well as bordering built-up areas

Stephen Brady, Labour leader of Hull City Council, claimed that combining together would give the area a stronger voice nationally.

"We don't have the influence and power that cities like Newcastle, Sheffield, Manchester and Leeds have got."

Mr Dennis said the East Riding referendum was not binding, but the result would be forwarded on to the Boundaries Commission who may be called on to make a decision on any change.

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