Boundary Referendum

Referendum – Councillors call to resist ‘Greater Hull’

Referendum mock upTHE NEWS breaking today in the media of a Postal Referendum likely to be held in the ‘early summer’ of 2014, asking people in (South West and Mid-Holderness) whether they want to be included in the administrative control of the East Riding of Yorkshire Council, or the Hull City Council has already prompted Town Mayor Councillor John Dennis to make a clarion call to battle stations!

The proposal for a postal referendum, backed by the leadership of the East Riding Council, is almost certainly going to be supported by the East Riding of Yorkshire Council at its meeting in Beverley today.

The referendum proposal, is an amendment to a motion by Ward Councillor Ann Suggit calling upon the council to “resist attempts by Hull City Council to expand its administrative boundaries into the East Riding.”

Councillors  John Dennis and Mike Bryan petitioning against Hull's 'Urban Sprawl' in April 2013

Councillors John Dennis and Mike Bryan petitioning against Hull’s ‘Urban Sprawl’ in April 2013

Councillor Dennis told us: “I attended a meeting at County Hall with ERYC Leader, Steve Parnaby, Chief Executive Nigel Pearson and the other Ward Members for our area and those from Haltemprice, Brough etc, at which the referendum proposal was explained.

“My thoughts are that this initiative requires maximum backing of residents in this area if we are to frustrate the expansionist ambitions of our larger neighbour. I suspect not too many will wish to be part of a greater Hull, but getting people to actually respond to the referendum is the key to making the Hull City Council aware of how big a battle they face if they press on with their proposal.

“Your readers may recall my fronting of the HOTI action group a few years ago. Whilst HOTI led the campaign it came down to ‘people power’ to see off the Saltend mega-Incinerator plan and we may need to call on that people power again.

“Why does a large city like Hull think it is acceptable to impose itself upon its unwilling neighbours especially rural areas such as this? It was only as recently as September 2011 that we were faced with a threat by the Boundaries Commission to incorporate the Parliamentary Constituency of South West Holderness into East Hull, much to the concern of all of the residents that I spoke to. I took their concerns and made a speech at the Public Enquiry at the City Hall, and, thankfully, the proposal was ditched. However it seems the City Fathers don’t give up easily either, so we will need to put a lot of energy into seeing them off again.

“To have any hope of success, the other ward members and I will be asking for assistance in our campaign. If any of your bloggers are prepared to help, can they please contact me.

“As the current Mayor I will be placing the matter before the next meeting of the Hedon Town Council, and as Ward Member will be spreading the word over the next few weeks to the nearby Parish Councils and to as many of our residents as possible.

Cllr Suggit “resist attempts by Hull City Council"

Cllr Suggit “resist attempts by Hull City Council”

“Of great concern to me is the possibility of an element of apathy which unfortunately often becomes apparent whenever people are required to actually make a response eg to turn out to vote, or to sign a petition. I see the need for a lot of door-knocking over the next few months, and bloggers’ help could prove invaluable.”

Those following local Hedon politics will know that the relationship between the two Conservative Ward Councillors John Dennis and Mike Bryan and Independent Councillor Ann Suggit has deteriorated since Councillor Suggit’s resignation from Hedon Town Council last November 2013. However, on the issue of the expansion of Hull City Council’s boundaries, all three Ward Councillors seem united.

Our representatives oppose becoming part of a Greater Hull, but what do local residents think?

So what would the views of people in Hedon be in any referendum? Is it as Councillor Dennis maintains that the overwhelming majority of people in Hedon would oppose the town’s incorporation into the administrative control of Hull? Or is the lure of drawing in greater investment into an enlarged city region, resulting in more jobs, greater wealth and more political clout at Government level enough to sway voters to consider the option of ‘Hedon (part of greater Hull)’?

We are opening a straw poll today and ask Hedon residents to give us their quick opinions:

10 replies »

  1. Steve,
    It’s not a just case of just passing on Ray’s poll, with a couple of hundred votes,
    This whole issue will be dealt with by way of a Principal Area Boundary Review (PABR) carried out by the Boundary Commission. The Hull City Council will be the primary instigator and the Commission will normally only undertake a review where there is AGREEMENT BETWEEN ALL THE COUNCIL INVOLVED (and there clearly isn’t) and the Commission needs to be satisfied that there is LOCAL SUPPORT (and again, evidenced by this poll, there isn’t)
    The local support (or opposition) can only be ascertained by a full scale referendum of all affected residents (not just here, but across in the Haltemprice villages too) and this is the route that ERYC has to go down. If they don’t, then the Commission will think we are just rolling over and accepting Hull’s proposal, and I for one won’t allow that to happen.
    So, whilst there will be a relatively small cost implication, bearing in mind the degree of support already shown in the blog-poll, I think most residents will be happy to pay it.
    The Full Council backed this – all parties – unanimously.

    John Dennis (Cllr).
    Ward Member S.W.Holderness

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    • Well done Ray ! The people have spoken and 86% say we want to stay in the East Riding. – pretty much the level of support I would expect.
      So perhaps our Eat Riding Councillors could share this with their Tory colleagues and save us all the cost of a postal referendum

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  2. Blimey, what are they thinking? The whole point of Hedon is we are NOT Hull. Much as I am fond of our nearest city and think it gets a raw deal in the media (its beautiful old town and vibrant history in general is usually overlooked in favour of the stench of deprivation), we in Hedon are a rural market town with a staunchly independent character. As I think I’ve posted before and others have noted here, Hull residents emigrate 🙂 to Hedon for that reason. So do many others. I lose count of how many of our customers are from other parts of the country – from Bradford to Essex – who have moved here for its feel, its beauty and its people. Don’t let the bigger boys take our ball away! Think the poll results say it all. Ps. In a similar vein, I’m gearing up to write a snotty letter to The Times who will insist on calling the area ‘Yorkshire and Humberside’…

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  3. Hedon has more than doubled in size in the past 50 years, many new residents arriving from Hull, having opted with their feet. Now Hull is again looking covetously at an encroachment. There must be something in it for the City Council. What is in it for the prospective encroached areas? Probably not a good deal.

    Hedon’s main gift from the City over recent years has been the near constant foul smell of the Saltend sewage works, a facility that should have been sorted before the redevelopment of Alexandra Docks (etc) that seems to have been sneakily snook-in under the radar when the old Humberside administrations folded. Despite blatant denials of stench, Hull’s next offerings are unlikely to be less whiffy.

    What could be expected? A restoration of a Hull-Hedon rail or tram link to parallel “green” aspirations? Worth thinking about, but very unlkely. A degredation of local schooling to homogenize with Hull’s shoddy and questionable record for 50 years plus? More likely than not. An improvement of local health care so that Hedon residents don’t need a £50 taxi trip to Castle Hill? Dream on. More employment for locals? Unlikely – most new jobs will probably go to those who commute from elsewhere. Improved roads and traffic? No, City Hall will still be too busy trying to unscramble the debacle that is Castle Street. Cleaner air in Hedon? Not if they build a fish farm on the old aerodrome. Thinning of police cover? Probably. A money grab at Hedon’s community charge income? Bet your new £1 coin.

    Meanwhile, Look North reporting will focus on a confrontational us-and-them stirring. There again, this is the public endeavour that routinely features its pricey crews standing outside empty offices (etc) at 9.40pm so that they can have a bit of irrelevant background footage and thereby hoodwink the viewer into thinking their piece has gravitas.

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  4. im totally against this move by Hull city council , but i would like to know how this would effect residents, council tax bill ?? services such as bin collections??? .things like that…whats in it for Hull ??? i want more information !!!!!

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  5. Totally agree, it would be far more agreeable for the better run ERYC to take over the services of Hull, may also save on the number of paid councillors that are currently in Hull

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  6. Most of Hull’s problems stem from its small geographical area but this is a ridiculous proposal. There is a bigger case to scrap Hull City Council and absorb it into East Riding, there must be massive cost benefits for doing this rather that adding a few villages into the City of Hull. After living in a few different places in England, I have to say ERYC are very good and must be one of the best, there’s no way I’d like to change to Hull.

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