28 August 2020
It has been announced by Lancashire County Council and its leader, Geoff Driver, that it could be replaced by three unitary authorities, namely North Lancashire (comprising Lancaster, Fylde, Wyre, Blackpool, and Ribble Valley), East Lancashire (comprising Rossendale, Blackburn with Darwen, Hyndburn, Burnley, and Pendle) and West Lancashire (comprising West Lancashire, Preston, Chorley, and South Ribble). Consequently, next year's Lancashire County Council elections could be cancelled with the county councillors' current terms extended until 2022, when the new authorities are likely to come into being.
These new authorities, based on arbitrary population requirements more than local needs, do not take into account the need for more localised services or the actual transport connections of the authorities in question. Lancaster has much better links with Barrow-in-Furness and South Lakeland than it does with any part of the Fylde Peninsula, for example. Geographical and local needs are more important for new unitary authorities, and all local devolution must be genuine and not reliant on the flawed Metro Mayor model.
Green councillors are following developments closely.
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