MP launches battle to save town name
APETITION has been launched to save the Middleton constituency from being carved in two as part of new plans being consulted on by the government.
Liz McInnes, the Member of Parliament for Heywood and Middleton, has started a campaign to stop the Boundary Commission for England from removing Heywood the existing Parliamentary seat.
Following a boundary review of all parliamentary constituencies, the Boundary Commission has concluded that the existing Heywood and Middleton seat should be carved up into two new seats.
If this were to go ahead, Middleton would be part of a new ‘Prestwich and Middleton’ seat, including the towns of Prestwich and Middleton and most of the town of Whitefield.
Heywood would become part of a new, larger seat simply called ‘Rochdale’.
That would include most of the town of Heywood and most of Rochdale, in particular the centre.
The name Heywood would be removed from the parliamentary map entirely.
Coun McInnes has slammed the plans and launched a petition to raise awareness of the proposed changes among residents and in a bid to get the name Heywood included in the title of the new constituency.
Coun McInnes said: “This petition isn’t about redrawing the proposals and keeping Heywood and Middleton as it is.
“Although that would be the preferred and sensible thing to do.
“This is about keeping the name of Heywood on the parliamentary map and giving our proud town the recognition and attention it deserves.
“Since 1885 the name Heywood has appeared in the name of its parliamentary constituency.
“Forcing us to be part of a new, larger Rochdale seat is one thing, but to remove the town’s proud name entirely is unacceptable.
“Like many other towns across the country, Heywood has suffered some tough times in recent years, including the closure of local bank branches and the loss of shops such as Dunnes.
“Our town needs more attention, not less.”
The petition to save Heywood’s identity in Parliament will be open until October 31.
It can be signed online at www.lizmcinnesmp.org. uk/campaigns/heywood.
There are also paper copies available at both the Heywood Civic Centre and Heywood Library.
MP Liz McInnes wants to stop Middleton constituency from being split