Time for us to swap counties, says councillor

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A LOCAL councillor is calling on the government to help end council control of a Wigan village.

Gareth Fairhust has written to Local Government Minister Eric Pickles asking him to re-draw the county administrative map so that Standish falls back into Lancashire.

He claims that the area has more in common with the Red Rose county it was once historically a part of before local government re-organisation in 1974.

The plea to Mr Pickles follows a recent Save Standish action group meeting called to discuss the growing number of housing developments and applications.

Standish Independents leader Coun Gareth Fairhurst said: “People are sick of this council using Standish as a cash cow and now enough is enough.

“I have written to Eric Pickles to ask if there is a mechanism on how the people can be consulted or a referendum to see if they want to leave Wigan, which I am sure they will, to become part of Lancashire County Council again.”

However leader of the council Lord Smith said: “Wigan Council was set up in 1974 by Act of Parliament and only a new Act can change it so no one at the council will be concerned at this aspect of Coun Fairhurst’s behaviour. In fact where reviews have taken place the outcome has been super-sized councils like the two for the whole of Cheshire and elsewhere government has encouraged joint working as small Councils can survive in an age of cuts.”

A council spokesman declined to comment.