RESIDENTS will be consulted on proposed changes to the polling arrangements in Newton-le-Willows.

On Wednesday, St Helens Council agreed to press ahead with a public consultation on proposals to change polling arrangements following an initial review of polling districts, polling places and polling stations.

The last formal review in St Helens took place in 2014, although polling places are kept under review annually following an election.

Since 2014, nine polling stations covering nine polling districts have been relocated.

During the consultation period for this latest review, representations were received from two elected members.

Suggested changes to polling stations in Newton ward were submitted, which also included proposals to change the boundary lines.

Currently there are five polling districts in Newton and the proposal is to move the boundary lines between four of them.

The reason for this is due to the increase in properties in Newton.

The council says the movement of the boundary lines between the polling districts will “even out” the number of properties in each polling district.

Speaking at full council on Wednesday, Newton Labour councillor Seve Gomez-Aspron said: “As a ward that’s grown, the dynamics have changed.

“It makes sense to change it.

“Also, in areas with poor turnout, the poorest, most-deprived areas usually turnout less than everybody else, so it’s important to make it accessible to them.”

Cllr Gomez-Aspron also suggested the council make increased efforts to encourage residents to register to vote.

The Labour councillor said: “Considering how far we are away from a general election, it would be good to have some sort of coordinated push to register voters and also register postal voters, because we do have a significantly high amount anyway.

“But it would be good to get everybody involved in the democratic process.”

It is important to note that the current proposals could change following a public consultation.

A report on the final proposals will be brought back for consideration at the St Helens Council meeting on October 30.