Thank you to everyone who signed our petition to keep the four Streatham wards in one constituency. We have submitted the petition to the Boundary Commission and now await the next stage of their consultation in spring 2012 when we'll get the opportunity to comment on the various different proposals.
The Boundary Commission plan to abolish the current Streatham constituency, tearing Streatham itself into three parts in the process.
The Boundary Commission's own guidelines state that they will aim to preserve existing historical and geographical links when proposing changes to constituency boundaries.
Streatham is a vibrant town with a strong sense of identity, evidenced by a broad variety of clubs, events and organisations, from The Friends of Streatham Common and the historical Streatham Society, to the online community Streatham Pulse, the Streatham Redskins ice hockey team and the hugely successful annual Streatham Festival at which both local and global acts perform.
The uniqueness of Streatham has been recognised by Lambeth Council which has agreed a Streatham Town Masterplan Strategy to give overall direction to regeneration and development in the area.
It is no surprise that the current MP put significant emphasis on the fact that he was born and raised in Streatham at the last election and that undoubtedly contributed to his success in a tight campaign.
The existing Streatham constituency is only marginally larger than the upper size limit of 80,473 electors by just a few hundred people.
But rather than trim some of the wards from Brixton, Tulse Hill, or Clapham that are attached to the Streatham constituency, the Boundary Commission's proposals rip the existing constituency into four different constituencies, tearing Streatham itself into three in the process.
The proposal to bolt the Streatham South ward onto the Mitcham constituency shows a complete lack of understanding of the area. Streatham Common is the focus of the community's leisure activities and home to the Streatham Festival. The Mitcham MP, not to mention the residents of Mitcham and Morden themselves, will naturally be focused on their own needs and are unlikely to have any interest in or understanding of the needs of Streatham’s residents. Residents from Norwood or Norbury are more likely to use Streatham Common than those from Mitcham.
And to call one of the newly proposed constituencies 'Streatham and Tooting' is completely misleading considering that it will include less than half of Streatham town itself.
Streatham faces on-going issues, such as the Streatham Hub development, that require dedicated representation in Parliament. To make Streatham's issues the marginal concerns of three different MPs will seriously damage our community.
In a perfect world the existing historic constituency of Streatham would continue to exist in its current form. We do however understand the difficulties the Boundary Commission faces in trying to implement Parliament’s wishes to cut the number of MPs from 650 to 600, and to ensure that constituencies have a similar number of voters so that everyone’s vote counts equally. We are not protesting against that, just the implications of the way it is being proposed.
We feel strongly that a constituency with Streatham in its name should continue to exist and should include all four Streatham wards (St. Leonards, Streatham Hill, Streatham Wells and Streatham South), regardless of which other neighbouring wards are added to it to create a constituency that meets the Boundary Commission's criteria.
We, the undersigned, call on the Boundary Commission to respect the historical and geographical integrity of the Streatham constituency.
We oppose the proposed carve up of Streatham and call for the preservation of a Parliamentary constituency with Streatham in its title that includes all four Streatham wards (St. Leonards, Streatham Hill, Streatham Wells and Streatham South).
The Save Our Streatham petition to Boundary Commission for England was written by Donal Galligan and is in the category Politics at GoPetition.