2000 for changes to four of the five constituencies in the county of
parliamentary electorate in 2000 of 380,651. This number of electors,
when divided by the 2000 electoral quota (69,932) gives a theoretical
entitlement to 5.44 seats. The commission have therefore
provisionally decided to continue to allocate five seats to Somerset.
With five seats the average constituency electorate in the county is
76,130. The electoral quota is explained in the 'Background Note'
2. The electorates of the five existing seats range from 81,375 in
the Taunton constituency, to 73,940 in the Bridgwater constituency, a
disparity of 7,435 which the commission's provisional recommendations
3. Following Periodical Electoral Reviews by the Local Government
Commission, some changes have been made to local authority
boundaries. New wards came into operation at the local government
elections on 6 May 1999. At present, five new wards in Somerset are
partly in one constituency and partly in another. The commission do
not divide district wards between constituencies. Therefore, at the
very least, the commission's provisional recommendations will realign
the constituency boundaries with the new ward boundaries.
4. The commission considered whether they should adopt the minimum
amount of change necessary to realign the constituencies with these
divided wards, or whether they should go further in order to address
the high disparity in electorates in the county between the Taunton
and Bridgwater constituencies. They decided to adopt the latter
option. No change is proposed to the Wells seat.
5. The three South Somerset District wards of Blackmoor Vale,
Camelot and Ivelchester are currently divided between the Somerton
and Frome seat and the Yeovil seat. The commission propose to include
the whole of the Blackmoor Vale and Camelot wards in the Somerton and
Frome seat and the whole of the Ivelchester ward within the Yeovil
6. As the majority of the electorate of the wards of Blackmore
Vale and Camelot are already situated within the Somerton and Frome
constituency, bringing the whole of these wards within this seat
results in a transfer of only 758 electors. In view of local ties
with the neighbouring town of Yeovil, the entire Ivelchester ward is
included within the Yeovil constituency, transferring 1,734 electors.
The net effect of these minor changes is slightly to increase the
electorate of the Yeovil seat from 76,073 to 77,049, and slightly to
decrease the electorate of the Somerton and Frome seat from 75,199 to
7. The two West Somerset District wards of Aville Vale, and
Brompton Ralph and Haddon are currently divided between the
Bridgwater seat and the Taunton seat. There is a disparity of 7,435
between the electorates of these two seats and the electorate of the
Taunton seat is 11,443 above the electoral quota.
8. In order to reduce the disparity and bring the electorate of
the Taunton seat closer to the electoral quota, the commission
propose to include the whole of the Aville Vale, and Brompton Ralph
and Haddon wards in the Bridgwater seat, and also to transfer the
three West Somerset District wards of Dulverton and Brushford,
Exmoor, and Quarme from the Taunton seat to the Bridgwater seat,
resulting in 3,840 electors being transferred.
9. As a consequence, the Taunton seat becomes coterminous with
Taunton Deane Borough, as opposed to it being split between the
Taunton Deane Borough and the West Somerset District as it is at
present. In addition, the entire District of West Somerset is now
contained within the Bridgwater seat. Currently it is split between
the Taunton and Bridgwater seats. These proposals reduce the
disparity in the county to 3,716. They also reduce the electorate of
the Taunton seat from 81,375 to 77,535 and increase Bridgwater's from
73,940 to 77,780. Thus, Taunton is only 1,405 and Bridgwater only
1,650 above the county average and Taunton is brought nearer to the
10. The proposed new constituencies are illustrated in outline on
the sketch map at the centre of this document (please note the
copyright warning below concerning the map). The letters on the map
refer to the districts, and the numbers refer to the district wards.
The map is to be used in conjunction with the ward listing at the end
of this document which shows the letters and districts, the numbers
and wards, and the 2000 ward electorates on which the Commission are
required by law to work.
11. The composition of the five constituencies provisionally
recommended would be (the 2000 electorates are shown in brackets):
BRIDGWATER COUNTY CONSTITUENCY (77,780). Fifteen wards of the
District of Sedgemoor:- Bridgwater Bower, Bridgwater Eastover,
Bridgwater Hamp, Bridgwater Quantock, Bridgwater Sydenham, Bridgwater
Victoria, Cannington and Quantocks, East Poldens, Huntspill and
Pawlett, King's Isle, North Pertherton, Puriton, Sandford, West
Poldens, Woolavington: and the District of West Somerset.
SOMERTON AND FROME COUNTY CONSTITUENCY (74,223). Fourteen wards of
the District of Mendip:- Beacon, Beckington and Rode, Coleford,
Creech, Frome Berkley Down, Frome Fromefield, Frome Keyford, Frome
Park, Frome Welshmill, Mells, Nordinton, Postlebury, Stratton, Vale;
and fifteen wards of the District of South Somerset:- Blackmore Vale,
Bruton, Burrow Hill, Camelot, Cary, Curry Rivel, Islemoor, Langport
and Huish, Martock, Milborne Port, Northstone, Tower, Turn Hill,
TAUNTON COUNTY CONSTITUENCY (77,535). The Borough of Taunton Deane.
WELLS COUNTY CONSTITUENCY (74,064). Twenty-one wards of the District
of Mendip: Ashwick and Ston Easton, Avalon, Chilcompton, Glastonbury
St. Benedict's, Glastonbury St. Edmund's, Glastonbury St. John's,
Glastonbury St. Mary's, Knowle, Moor, Nedge, Pylcombe, Rodney and
Priddy, St. Cuthbert (Out) North and West, Shepton East, Shepton
West, Street North, Street South, Street West, Wells Central, Wells
St. Cuthbert's, Wells St. Thomas'; and ten wards of the District of
Sedgemoor:- Axbridge, Axe Vale, Berrow, Brent North, Burnham North,
Burnham South, Cheddar and Shipham, Highbridge, Knoll, Wedmore and
YEOVIL COUNTY CONSTITUENCY (77,049). Twenty-four wards of the
District of South Somerset: Blackdown, Brympton, Chard Avishayes,
Chard Combe, Chard Crimchard, Chard Holyrood, Chard Jocelyn, Coker,
Crewkerne, Eggwood, Hamdon, Ilminster, Ivelchester, Neroche, Parrett,
St. Michael's, South Petherton, Tatworth and Forton, Windwhistle,
Yeovil Central, Yeovil East, Yeovil South, Yeovil West, Yeovil
12. Please note that the wards have not been shown for those
boroughs and districts (eg the Borough of Taunton Deane) where the
whole of the borough or district is contained in the proposed
constituency. However, as already mentioned, a full ward listing with
2000 ward electorates is given at the end of this document.
13. The wards named in this document are the new wards which were
created by the following Orders all of which came into effect at the
local elections on 6 May 1999:
The District of Mendip (Electoral Changes) Order 1998;
The District of Sedgemore (Electoral Changes) Order 1998;
The District of South Somerset (Electoral Changes) Order 1998;
The Borough of Taunton Deane (Electoral Changes) Order 1998; and
The District of West Somerset (Electoral Changes) Order 1998.
Publication of Provisional Recommendations
14. The provisional recommendations will be published formally in a
notice appearing in local newspapers in Somerset on 6 July 2000.
Local authorities, MPs, the Political Parties' Headquarters, and
others will be sent a copy of the recommendations. The notice will
also be published on the Commission's web site at:
Places of Inspection
15. The notice in local newspapers will also give the addresses
where a copy of the recommendations and a more detailed map
illustrating them have been made available for inspection by the
public (please note the copyright warning below concerning the map).
Those addresses are:-
BRIDGWATER Sedgemoor District Council Offices, Bridgwater House,
King Square, Bridgwater
BURNHAM-ON-SEA Sedgemoor District Council Area Offices, Manor House,
Manor Gardens, Burnham-on-Sea
CHARD Area West Council Offices, Holyrood Lace Mill,
Holyrood Street, Chard
FROME Frome Library, Justice Lane, Frome
GLASTONBURY Glastonbury Town Hall, Glastonbury
MINEHEAD West Somerset District Council Offices, 37 Blenheim
SHEPTON MALLET Mendip District Council Offices,Cannards Grave Road,
SOMERTON South Somerset District Community Office, The Parish
TAUNTON Taunton Deane Borough Council Offices, The Deane
House, Belvedere Road, Taunton
WINCANTON The Council Offices, Churchfield, Wincanton
YEOVIL The Council Offices, Brympton Way, Yeovil
Representation Period: 6 July 2000 to 6 August 2000
16. The commission are required to consider representations about
their provisional recommendations made within one month of local
publication on 6 July 2000. Representations should be addressed to
the Boundary Commission for England, PO Box 31060, London, SW1V 2FF,
or faxed to 020 7533 5176, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All representations received by the commission will be acknowledged.
The representation period will end on 6 August 2000.