One of the main local issues raised with me during my time as Southport's MP has been our place within Sefton.
Southport has historically been part of Lancashire, however during the 1970s it was included in the newly formed Metropolitan Borough of Sefton in Merseyside. Sefton also includes Bootle, Crosby, Formby, Magull, and Litherland.
Many Southport residents disagreed with this change, and would instead prefer to join with areas such as Ormskirk, Rufford, Banks, Burscough, Skelmersdale, Tarleton, Scarisbrick, and Hesketh Bank. I fully support this proposal.
I believe that Sefton Council do not understand our town, and that we do not get a good return on the estimated £60 million of council tax Southport pays into council coffers each year. I share the view that Southport has been treated as a cash-cow for decades, and that Southport’s interests would be best served by leaving Sefton, and entering into an arrangement with West Lancashire Borough Council and Lancashire County Council.
Due to the pandemic, this campaign has had to be placed on hold whilst attention focused on tacking Covid-19. Now that we are coming out the other side of the pandemic, I would like progress to be made.
As such, I have written to the Secretary of State for Levelling-Up, Housing, and Communities on this issue, and I am in discussion with parliamentary and council colleagues.
I hope that more progress will be made in the new year, which I will ensure constituents are kept updated.