CHANGES to polling arrangements in Newton-le-Willows will be implemented in January.

Earlier this year St Helens Council carried out a review of polling districts, polling places and polling stations within the borough.

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

During the initial consultation period, suggested changes to polling stations in Newton ward were submitted to the council.

A proposal was put forward for the polling station previously based at Newton Family and Community Centre in Park Road South to be moved to the Vulcan Bowling Club in Raleigh Close.

Changes to the boundary lines was also proposed.

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

The council said the move will “even out” the number of properties in each polling district.

The proposals, together with the separate report from the acting returning officer, were published on the council’s website from September 17 to October 1 as part of a public consultation exercise.

A new council report confirmed that it did not receive any further representations concerning the published proposals.

The report adds that Vulcan Bowling Club has been evaluated and it has been concluded that the proposed polling station would be a more central location within the polling district.

The changes were rubber stamped by St Helens Council at its last full meeting.

An amendement was tabled and approved that said, due to the announcement of a snap election on December 12, the proposed changes will be delayed and implemented from January 1, 2020 when the December 1, 2019 register will be amended.

The arrangements will be published in line with the guidance set out by the Electoral Commission’s review of polling districts, polling places and polling stations.

Newton ward councillor Seve Gomez-Aspron said the changes should provide voters in the polling district with a “better option”.

Cllr Gomez-Aspron said: “It is vital that we make voting as easy as possible for everyone. And that includes accessible polling stations, with good parking that are easy to get to.

“Due to the amount of housing built in Newton-le-Willows at places like the former Vulcan Works Site, then a review was a good time to propose new locations.

“The new arrangements should provide everyone with a better option.

“Also, I’d encourage anyone who wants maximum flexibility to register for a postal vote free online.”

For more information on voting by post, click here.