Cheshire West and Chester
|Cheshire West and Chester|
|Borough and Unitary authority|
Cheshire West and Chester shown within Cheshire
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Region||North West England|
|Established||1 April 2009|
|• Type||Unitary authority|
|• Body||Cheshire West and Chester Council|
|• Leadership||Leader and cabinet|
|• Leader||Samantha Dixon|
|• Lord Mayor (Chester)||Hugo Deynem|
|• Chief Executive||Steve Robinson|
|• Total||353.9 sq mi (916.7 km2)|
|Population (Mid-2014 est.)|
|• Density||940/sq mi (362/km2)|
|• Ethnicity||98.5% white|
|Time zone||Greenwich Mean Time (UTC+0)|
|• Summer (DST)||British Summer Time (UTC+1)|
|NUTS 3 code||UKD63|
Cheshire West and Chester is a unitary authority area with borough status, in the ceremonial county of Cheshire. It was established in April 2009 as part of the 2009 structural changes to local government in England, by virtue of an order under the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007. It replaced the boroughs of Ellesmere Port and Neston, Vale Royal and Chester District and its council took over the function of the former Cheshire County Council within its area. The rest of ceremonial Cheshire is composed of Cheshire East, Warrington and Halton. The decision to create the Cheshire West and Chester unitary authority was announced on 25 July 2007 following a consultation period, in which a proposal to create a single Cheshire unitary authority was rejected. Chester City Council had proposed the new authority be called "The City of Chester and West Cheshire" but this was also rejected.
- 1 Governance
- 2 Demography
- 3 Local nature reserves
- 4 Transport
- 5 Twin towns
- 6 References
- 7 External links
The electoral wards for the new unitary authority were the same as those used in the former Cheshire County Council elections, with each ward electing 3 councillors. The first elections to the authority took place on 1 May 2008, with the Conservatives gaining control with a majority of 38 councillors. When first contested there were 72 elected councillors in the authority led by Councillor Mike Jones.
Due to boundary changes put into effect prior to 2011 elections, 3 additional councillor seats were created, making a total of 75 councillors in the authority. The new wards are a mixture of single member wards, two member wards and three member wards. The Conservative Party retained control with a diminished majority having won 42 seats whilst Labour won 32 seats and the Liberal Democrats won 1. It is likely that the changes in the ward boundaries favoured the opposition parties when compared with the ward boundaries used for the 2008 which were seen as favouring the Conservative party. The 2008 elections took place when the Labour Party nationally was performing particularly badly..
There was a by-election in October 2011 following the death of Labour Party Leader Derek Bateman in July 2011. Cllr Lynn Clare was duly elected to represent the Ellesmere Port Town ward.
The 2015 election took place on 7 May, on the same day as other local elections and the general election. All 75 seats were being contested. As a result of the election, the council moved from Conservative control to Labour control, and was the only council to change hands in this way in the 2015 elections. In addition, the Liberal Democrats' only seat on the council was lost, while an independent was elected to the Parkgate ward.
Details of the current councillors can be found using this link: http://online.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/Election2015/CouncillorAtoZ.aspx
Council wards, Civil parishes and House of Commons constituencies
There are 97 parish councils in the borough, despite there being a total of 166 civil parishes before a community governance review was undertaken by the borough council in 2014 under section 82 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007:
Members of Parliament
Members of the European Parliament
|2011 United Kingdom Census|
|Country of birth||Population|
The majority of the population of Cheshire West and Chester is British-born, with the percentage standing at 95.1% (2011), a figure significantly above that of the UK as a whole (88.7%, 2010). The largest overseas nationality is Polish, which is significant because of the World War II U.S. military base and subsequent Polish refugee camp in Cuddington.
The overwhelming main religion in Cheshire West and Chester is Christianity, with a percentage figure above the average for England and Wales (59.3%, 2011). The single largest church is the Church of England, with the borough being served by the Chester Archdeaconry, with six deaneries and an average of twenty parish churches in each deanery. Roman Catholicism also has a significant presence across the borough, with all its churches located in the Diocese of Shrewsbury.
Methodist churches in the borough form groups averaging ten, known as 'circuits' (the four in Cheshire West and Chester are all part of the Chester and Stoke-on-Trent District). More marginal churches include Assemblies of God, Baptist Union, Elim Pentecostal, United Reformed and the English Presbyterian Church of Wales in Chester.
Aside from churches, there are two mosques in Cheshire West and Chester - one each in Chester and Ellesmere Port - which were subjected to property theft and racially-aggravated disorder respectively in 2014.
Local nature reserves
Cheshire West and Chester Council maintains six Local Nature Reserves: Burton Mill Wood (Ellesmere Port), Helsby Quarry (Vale Royal), Marshall's Arm (Vale Royal), Rivacre Valley (Ellesmere Port), Stanney Wood (Ellesmere Port) and Whitby Park (Ellesmere Port).
There are no airports in the borough, with the nearest passenger airports being Liverpool and Manchester which licensed vehicles provide transport to. Airbus' fleet of A300-600ST Beluga transporter aircraft are based at Hawarden Airport in neighbouring Flintshire, adjacent to their wing manufacturing facility.
Three disused railways in the borough have been converted to off-road cycleways, including:
- Birkenhead Railway: Contains sections of NCR56 and the Wirral Circular Trail and is now called Wirral Way.
- Chester & Connah's Quay Railway: Contains a section of NCR5 and is now called Chester Millennium Greenway.
- Winsford and Over Branch Line: Contains a section of regional route 71 and is now called Whitegate Way.
Chester is the hub of the railway network in the borough, with over four million trips recorded annually. Railway lines in the borough - not necessarily connecting to Chester - include:
- Borderlands Line: Connects Bidston in Wirral with Wrexham in Wales and includes a stop at Neston. Services are provided by Arriva Trains Wales.
- Chester-Manchester Line: Includes stops at Helsby and Frodsham and is operated by Arriva Trains Wales.
- Ellesmere Port to Warrington Line: Includes stops at Stanlow & Thornton and Ince & Elton before meeting the Chester-Manchester Line near Helsby and is operated by Northern Rail according to a Department for Transport-set minimum service pattern.
- Mid-Cheshire Line: Leaves the Chester-Manchester Line near Mickle Trafford and includes stops at Mouldsworth, Delamere, Cuddington, Greenbank, Northwich and Lostock Gralam, with services provided by Northern Rail. A single-track railway exists between Northwich and Sandbach, but it is only used for freight.
- North Wales Coast Line: Originates at Crewe and passes through Chester, with services provided by Arriva Trains Wales and Virgin Trains.
- Shrewsbury to Chester Line: The section between Wrexham and Chester is currently in the process of being reinstated as a two-track railway under the direction of the Welsh Government. Services are provided by Arriva Trains Wales and Virgin Trains.
- West Coast Main Line: Aside from stops at Winsford, Hartford and Acton Bridge, the branch line to Liverpool diverges at Weaver Junction - the oldest of its type in Great Britain. It is currently operated by Virgin Trains, however High Speed 2 services to Liverpool using "classic compatible" trains are proposed to run along this section of the line.
- Wirral Line: Includes stops at Bache, Capenhurst and Hooton, with a branch line from the latter running to Ellesmere Port, with stops at Little Sutton and Overpool. The line is operated by Merseyrail and this and the WCML are the only two electrified railways in the borough.
Motorways and trunk roads in the borough which are maintained by Highways England include the M6, M53, M56, A55, A483, A494, A550 and a short section of the A41 in Hooton. Other primary routes maintained by the council include the A41, A49, A51, A54, A56, A483, A530, A533, A534, A556, A5115, A5116, A5117 and A5268.
Navigable waterways in the borough include the Shropshire Union Canal, Trent and Mersey Canal and the Weaver Navigation, the latter two being connected together by the Anderton Boat Lift near Northwich, the only caisson lift lock in the United Kingdom.
Whilst the borough per se does not have any twinning agreements, several of its settlements have agreements predating its creation in 2009, listed below:
- Vale Royal Borough Council – Minister's announcement is welcomed
- Chester City Council – Two new councils for Cheshire
- Cheshire West and Chester Council Shadow Authority
- Cheshire (Structural Changes) Order 2008
- BBC News, 25 July 2007 – County split into two authorities. Retrieval Date: 25 July 2007.
- Chester City Council proposals. Retrieval date: 3 July 2010.
- "People and Places" proposed electoral wards. Retrieval Date: 9 August 2007.
- Proposals for new City of Chester and West Cheshire Local Authority. Chester District website. Retrieval Date: 25 October 2007.
- Cheshire West and Chester election Results, 2 May 2008
- Cheshire West and Chester 2011 Election Results 5 May 2011
- "Labour take control of Cheshire West and Chester Council". Northwich Guardian. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
- [A-Z of Elected Councillors] Cheshire West and Chester District Council, Accessed 25 May 2015
- Cheshire West and Chester 2011 Elections: Result by Ward 5 May 2011
- Cheshire West and Chester Member Index: Your Councillors by Ward 6 May 2011
- "Town and parish councils". www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk. Cheshire West and Chester. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- "Parish and Town Councils in Cheshire" (PDF). www.chalc.org.uk. Cheshire Association of Local Councils. Retrieved 30 May 2015.
- "Community governance arrangements". www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk. Cheshire West and Chester. Retrieved 6 June 2015.
- "Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 - section 82". www.legislation.gov.uk. Legislation.gov.uk. Retrieved 6 June 2015.
- "2011 Census, Key Statistics for Local Authorities in England and Wales". Ons.gov.uk. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2015.
- "Neighbourhood Statistics (North West (Region))". neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 27 June 2015.
- "Population and social conditions" (PDF). www.ec.europa.eu/eurostat. Eurostat. Retrieved 11 July 2015.
- "2011 Census, Key Statistics for Local Authorities in England and Wales". Ons.gov.uk. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- "2011 Census, Key Statistics for Local Authorities in England and Wales". Ons.gov.uk. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2015.
- "Heartless thieves steal plants from mosque during Ramadan". www.chesterchronicle.co.uk. Chester Chronicle. Retrieved 28 July 2015.
- "Ellesmere Port man arrested after pig's head placed outside Islamic centre". www.chesterchronicle.co.uk. Chester Chronicle. Retrieved 28 July 2015.
- "Statutory Sites". Cheshire West and Chester council. Retrieved 28 January 2011.
- "Complete Library of Free Chester Cycle Route Maps". www.chestercyclecity.org. Chester Cycling Campaign. Retrieved 29 May 2015.
- "Electrification Task Force Final Report Revealed". www.railnorth.org. Rail North. Retrieved 29 May 2015.
- Cheshire West and Chester Council website
- Webcasts – Cheshire West and Chester Council meetings
- Cheshire West and Chester Council's videos