What is the Geographical Boundary of the Cambs Unitaries Campaign?
We are campaigning for a reorganisation within the existing boundary of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority – ie Cambridgeshire County and the current Peterborough UA. Moving the external boundaries to this area is likely to make the implementation too difficult. Viable unitary authorities will need a population of at least 300,000 each based on previous precedent.
What Councils would be impacted?
We envisage the existing district Councils (Cambridge City, East Cambs, Fenland, Hunts, South Cambs), the County Council, the Greater Cambridge Partnership and the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority would be abolished, and their functions transferred to 2 or more unitary authorities. The existing Peterborough Unitary Authority could enlarge to join with other areas, or remain as it is. Some strategic functions e.g. strategic transport may need to be decided at a regional or national level.
What would happen to existing parish and town Councils?
These would all be retained. Areas within cities would have similar forums for local decisions, such as area committees.
What will be the boundaries of the new Unitary Authorities?
How many new Unitary Authorities and where the boundaries are should be determined in consultation with residents, after establishing principles to determine the number of unitaries and boundaries, such as what residents consider to be their local town/city, what are the travel to work areas and which area residents have most affinity to.
Would Cambridge lose its City Status?
No. Cambridge would maintain its city status and also maintain its 800+ year connection to its first borough charter from King John. We anticipate ceremonial roles such as the Lord Lieutenant would continue to represent their current areas.
Would Central Government support new Cambs Unitaries?
If proposals come from bottom-up campaigning, the Government will have to consider them seriously. Several new Unitary Authorities have been created recently (e.g. Northamptonshire and North Yorkshire), and if our current local government settlement continues to be so dysfunctional, there is a risk that change will be imposed from above.
How would elections work for the new Councils?
The rules would need to be based on existing national government rules for local authority elections. How many members there are for each ward, and how often elections are held would need to be decided.
Are you connected with any other organisation?
No, the Cambs Unitaries Campaign is not connected in any way to any other organisation.
Does the Cambs Unitaries Campaign have views on current topical issues?
No, our organisation is purely about the structure of local government.
Whilst our individual members may have a wide range of views on all kinds of local issues, the Campaign is not the place for those to be aired or discussed, as our sole focus is on securing better local government arrangements.