RESIDENTS are being asked to share their views on the governance arrangements for all town and parish councils in Cheshire East.

The survey, which went live on Monday, will inform a review being undertaken across the borough by Cheshire East Council.

The council is responsible for the governance and electoral arrangements for the 186 town and parish council wards in 135 town and parish councils, which cover the whole borough.

This community governance review (CGR) will include town and parish boundaries, numbers of town and parish councillors, grouping of parishes, and wards.

As part of this process, the council wants people’s initial views on how they feel current governance arrangements for town and parishes are faring and whether there is a need for change – and why?

This pre-consultation will support the development of community governance proposals for formal consultation in 2020 – the first since CEC's creation in 2009.

Councillor Joy Bratherton, chairman of CEC's CGR sub-committee, said: “As part of this review we need to hear people’s views on how effective current town and parish arrangements are at meeting local needs and any suggestions as to how this could be improved.

“The present arrangements predate the formation of Cheshire East and we are mindful that there has since been considerable change to the population, its distribution and to the borough’s settlements.

“The survey will feed into the overarching review, which offers the opportunity to ensure that the tier of parish governance is fit for purpose for the future. I would urge people to take part in this pre-consultation survey and share their views via the council website.”

Paper copies of the survey can also be obtained from libraries, Macclesfield Town Hall, The Municipal Buildings in Crewe and Westfields in Sandbach.

Cllr Bratherton added: “Nothing is changing yet, as the review is a complex task and any changes proposed under the CGR would follow extensive public consultation – including with town and parish councils and other stakeholders. "The aim is to complete the process well before the scheduled local elections in May 2023 – and there certainly won’t be change for change’s sake.”

The Cheshire East community governance review does not include the electoral arrangements for borough council or parliamentary seats.

The survey runs until January 31 online here.