Gary's News and views

Gary Streeter MP for South West Devon

Gary writes a weekly article which appears in the Plympton Plymstock and Ivybridge News in South West Devon. The articles are published here.


Thursday, 2 March 2017


This week the independent Boundary Commission publishes all of the responses it has received to its initial proposal for changes to our UK-wide Parliamentary boundaries. These can be found on

A reminder why this is happening: Parliamentary boundaries are reviewed every ten years or so to ensure that the right number of voters are found in each constituency. This time we are also reducing the number of seats from 650 to 600 so the impact is greater. Whether we are wise to do that given the extra workload that Brexit will cause Parliament remains to be seen.

South West Devon constituency does not come out unscathed – with current proposals suggesting that Plymstock be removed and taken into Plymouth Devonport and Sutton to be replaced by Tavistock and its surrounding West Devon delights. I regret the splitting of Plympton and Plymstock which have been my constant companions these past twenty five years, but I see the necessity of it
to get the Plymouth arithmetic right. I welcome the inclusion of all points north to Tavistock and beyond, as I believe it could be a coherent constituency, all of it impacted by the gravitational pull of the city of Plymouth.

I objected to the proposed new name of Tavistock and Ivybridge, suggesting South West Devon should be retained, or at the very least Plympton is added to the name. Might I suggest you all have a look at the proposed changes and people's comments and have your say?

There is another major change I now believe we should make to our political landscape. The time has surely now come for the significant reform of the House of Lords. I voted against the last proposals for Senators and fifteen years terms because of concerns about accountability. But we cannot go on with an Upper House that is so large, elderly and unwieldly. I would support a partially
elected second chamber with people being elected maybe by proportional representation on a regional basis. I would still want to retain a system of appointment for cross-benchers and special people who have something to contribute to national life.

Unfortunately there will be no time in this Parliament to introduce any radical changes as the Great Repeal Bill (paving the way for Brexit) will gobble up most of our Parliamentary time for the next year.

But before too long, as the House of Commons is streamlined, their lordships must follow suit.

posted by Gary @ 08:49