'City of the Fylde' not currently an option says Blackpool leader

There is no likelihood of Blackpool seeking to be part of  a 'city of the Fylde' at the moment, the town's council leader has stated.

Tuesday, 19th March 2019, 4:17 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th March 2019, 4:33 pm
Blackpool Town Hall
Blackpool Town Hall

Coun Simon Blackburn says he would still prefer to see a combined authority created across Lancashire rather than Blackpool joining forces with just Fylde and Wyre as has been suggested in the past.

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Blackpool Town Hall

Blackburn and Darwen is the only other unitary authority in Lancashire along with Blackpool.

A single unitary authority across the Fylde coast has been mooted at various times.

Coun Blackburn said: "In my meetings with civil servants and ministers, I detect no ambition, on the part of the ministry of housing, communities and local government, or the government more widely, to consider the matter of local government reorganisation at this time.

"They are clear however that where areas want to reorganise, and can agree upon the nature of that reorganisation, they will consider each application on its merits - as happened for instance recently in Dorset, where the county council and it’s districts were replaced by two unitary councils.

Coun Simon Blackburn

"On that basis, any proposals for reorganisation in Lancashire ought really to involve, and have the support of all 15 constituent authorities, which is not something I can envisage happening any time soon.

"My preferred solution continues to be much closer working between the existing councils, with the creation of an overarching combined authority to negotiate improved powers and funding from central government in London.”

Proposals to create a Lancashire-wide combined authority have been on the back-burner since 2017, when Fylde and Wyre councils said they did not wish to be part of the process.

However the shadow combined authority, of which Coun Blackburn is vice-chairman, continues to meet each month.