Map with the parish wards shown in different coloursFollowing the Local Government Boundary Commission for England’s (LGBCE) review of polling wards for Dartford borough two new borough wards were established for Stone parish. Stone Castle and Stone House, which created a new ward boundary at the m25 and down to Princes Road. As part of their process the LGBCE created new parish wards to align with these new borough boundaries. However Dartford Borough Council decided to carry out its own Community Governance Review of the parish boundaries, and instead of proceeding with LGBCE’s recommendations for parishes chose to consult on three options; two maintaining the current boundary and a third to extend the parish boundary to the M25 divide and Princes Road South.

Stone Parish Council members felt option two was the most appropriate arrangement due to it being supported by a strong community identity, as well as a defined physical landscape providing natural and obvious boundaries.

However, when the Officers report was submitted to the General Assembly it outlined an alternative option that the public had not been consulted on. Following discussion Dartford Borough Council members resolved the alternative boundary that zig-zags around Milestone Ward, rather than adhere to the obvious boundary of the M25.

The justification for this decision seems somewhat unclear as the report did not demonstrate effectively how this option complies with community governance legislative requirements.

 

Stone Parish Council has requested further information to support this decision.

Dartford is due to formally resolve to make a reorganisation order in December 2018, ahead of the next local elections in May 2019.

Read the full report on the Community Governance Review.opens PDF file