Unitary Status For Norwich - Takeover bid for fringe parishes is on

It has been announced that Norwich has not been granted unitary status, but in a disgraceful twist, minister Hazel Blears confirmed that the government might allow Norwich to take over a number or rural fringe parishes, some of which are some considerable distance from Norwich, in order to make the Norwich bid viable.

The parishes concerned do not want to become part of Norwich and the proposal has received no support from people outside of the boundaries of Norwich, indeed, it has received little enough support from people in Norwich itself (37% by the city's own statistics).

If a takeover has been granted to Norwich, it will mean a dismemberment of Broadland District Council and a rising of costs in North Norfolk as this council will have to take over the burden of running services in rural parts of Broadland where it costs more to provide services, and no, of course the government will not provide any support to North Norfolk to do this. Don't be silly !


Friend of the County said...

It's been announced nothing of the sort! The local papers in Norfolk can't seem to decide what's been announced, but what John Healey said was:

although Norwich City Council's proposal based on the city’s current boundaries did not meet the strict criteria there is a strong case for a unitary authority. We have decided to ask the Boundary Committee to advise, when they are able to use their new powers in the LGPIH Bill once enacted, whether an alternative unitary proposal for Norwich based on revised council boundaries could deliver the required improvements.

Norfolk Blogger said...

So what has been said is "no", but "we might let you take over neighbouring areas".

So in essence, a takeover might still be on the cards ?

Pete Roberts said...

I've been watching this from a work capacity (I deal with lots of councils on a day to day basis). My take is that the greater Norwich bid is likely to have been successful had boundary changes been allowed. As they weren't you now have this fudge situation. Given what is happening in Beds I find it hard to see anything other than a Norwich Unitary and a remaining Norfolk Unitary being created if the five criteria are to be met

Norfolk Blogger said...

For me the problem is Norwich's attempt to take over parishes that do not consider themselves to be part of Norwich. You could argue that Sprtowston, Helleson, Thrope St Andrew, Costessey and Cringleford are part of Norwich, but Horsford, Rackheath, Spixworth ? This was a blatant attempt at a land grab and the people in the parishes were annoyed and upset at being subsumed in to Norwich when they are not part of Norwich. In the case of places like Taverham and Drayton, they are being removed from the Norwich North Parliamentary seat and placed with places like Fakenham, so it seems illogical then to say then that these places are part of Norwich.

Anonymous said...

This is quite possibly the sole issue where you are always sane in your mumblings Nich.

Simon said...

Interesting looking at the other side of this issue. I live in a village a similar distance from Keighley as (looking at the map) some of those parishes you mention as being a long way away. Our area is administered by the same council as Keighley and it seems inconceivably illogical to think that we wouldn't be covered by the same council as the nearest big town.

But the fact we have KEIGHLEY at the end of our address and pay our council tax to the same office, doesn't affect our identity as a separate community. The name on the council tax bill is just paperwork, it doesn't define the identity of the area.

Perhaps that is the problem, such planning is made by people who live in Metropolitan Counties, rather than traditional ones, and don't understand how things are done elsewhere.