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LORDS ATTACK DOVER'S TACTICS

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Dover DC came under fire in the House of Lords this week for allegedly bullying local residents and gerrymandering....
Dover DC came under fire in the House of Lords this week for allegedly bullying local residents and gerrymandering.

Two Conservative peers criticised Dover for deciding to divide the parish of Sandwich into two wards for district council elections.

Lord Pender claimed the proposed split had been rejected by local residents by a three-to-one margin.

He accused the council's Labour leader, Reg Hansell, of ignoring the views of his own officers who wanted to maintain the status quo and said the move could be seen as gerrymandering.

Former Tory minister Baroness Trumpington of Sandwich asked if it was usual to split constituencies where the population is under 4,000 (Sandwich houses 3,836).

She challenged environment minister Lord Whitty to comment on the fact that 'Sandwich people very much resent being bullied against their will by Dover DC'.

Lord Whitty said he was aware of local feeling but added: 'At the end of the day, this is a matter for Dover DC.'

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