Agenda and draft minutes

Electoral Provisions Sub-Committee - Tuesday 31 October 2017 7.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room B12. View directions

No. Item


Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


An apology for lateness was received from Councillor Hawkes.


Declarations of Interests

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the term(s) of the Grant of Dispensation (if any) by the Audit Board or Managing Director.



There were no declarations of interests.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 88 KB

To agree the minutes of the last meeting of the Sub-committee held on 17 September 2014.


The minutes of the sub-committee meeting held on 17 September 2014 were confirmed as an accurate record.


Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.


There were no urgent items.


New Polling Districts for Greenhithe Ward pdf icon PDF 66 KB

To consider for recommendation to the General Assembly of the Council the creation of two new polling districts and the reconfiguration of existing polling districts in Greenhithe Ward and a revised definition of a polling place.

Additional documents:


The sub-committee received a report seeking agreement to recommend the creation of two new polling districts in Greenhithe Ward and the re-configuration of the existing polling districts to the General Assembly of the Council. It was reported that since the last review of polling districts and polling places in 2014 the electorate in the two existing polling districts in Greenhithe Ward had risen well above the Electoral Commission’s  recommended upper limit of 2,500 electors entitled to vote in a polling station. Although there would need to be a wider review of polling arrangements once the current review by the Local Government Boundary Commission had been completed any new arrangements arising from that review would not take effect until May 2019   If there was a major election before May 2019 the current polling arrangements in Greenhithe would not be fit for purpose and the sub-committee was asked to consider the creation of two new polling districts and the reconfiguration of the existing polling districts to provide suitable arrangements in case this were to happen.


It was proposed that the existing DA Greenhithe polling district should be split into two new polling districts DA Greenhithe, essentially formed of properties in the old Greenhithe Village, and DC Abbey, to serve Ingress Park. DA Greenhithe would retain its existing polling station in the Bronze Inc Tanning Studio whilst DC Abbey would have its own polling station for the first time possibly located at the new Community Centre or in a mobile unit. The existing DB Knockhall polling district would also be split into two with a new DB Knockhall polling district serving the major built area at the north end of the polling district and a new polling district, DD Cherry Orchard, serving the new build area in Ebbsfleet. DB Knockhall would retain the existing polling station at the Royal British Legion Club on London Road and DD Cherry Orchard would have its polling station in Cherry Orchard Primary School, possibly moving to the nearby Community Centre when this opened.


Members were also asked to recommend a new definition of a polling place as a “location within the polling district, unless special circumstances require otherwise” rather than the current definition which for permanent stations defined the polling place as a zone within a 250 metre radius from the location of the permanent polling station. The change was recommended to allow the Returning Officer to have more flexibility to identify a suitable location for a polling station if the existing location was not available.


Members welcomed the proposals which addressed the requirements of the growing population and electorate within Greenhithe Ward and felt that the new polling district boundaries and polling station locations were sensible and appropriate. The use of the Bronze Inc Tanning Salon at recent elections was discussed and it was accepted that whilst the location might not be ideal it was currently the best available in the polling district and would be dealing with a much smaller number of electors  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Parliamentary Boundary Review 2018 - Revised Proposals for New Parliamentary Constituency Boundaries pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To advise Members of the latest stage in the review of Parliamentary constituency boundaries by the Boundary Commission for England and the implications for Dartford.


The sub-committee was advised of the latest stage in the review of Parliamentary constituencies across the country by the Boundary Commission for England. The Boundary Commission was required to carry out a review of constituency boundaries every 5 years and had also been tasked with reducing the number of constituencies in England from 533 to 501, with the number across the UK reducing by 50. The Commission also had to establish constituencies of broadly comparable size within an electorate range of 71,031 and 78,507 (within +/-5% of the mean figure across the UK). As a result of these requirements and the knock on effects when constituency boundaries changed this meant that most constituencies would have revised boundaries with 75% of constituencies in the South East having some change. The criteria used by the Commission in formulating its proposals were detailed in the report.


The Commission’s initial proposals proposals for Dartford were that the Sevenoaks District Council ward of Hartley and Hodsoll Street should be transferred from Dartford constituency and included in the Gravesham constituency which would mean that the Dartford parliamentary constituency would be coterminous with the Borough Council boundary. The initial proposals had been subject to two rounds of public consultation and the Commission was currently undertaking a third round of public consultation on its revised proposals. The proposal for Dartford remained unchanged. The Commission would be submitting its recommendations to the Government in September 2018 and the changes would take effect at the first General Election after they had been agreed by parliament.


Members welcomed the proposed arrangements for Dartford Constituency.




That the Boundary Commission for England’s review of parliamentary boundaries be noted and that the proposed boundary for the Dartford Parliamentary Constituency to be coterminous with the Borough Boundary be endorsed.