Lewes MP Norman Baker has called the revised boundaries released by the Boundary Commission "swapping one bad proposal for another" as Newhaven will be split in two and Seaford will end up at the tail end of a stretched out coastal constituency.
However, with the Conservatives breaking the coalition contract by failing to support Lords Reform, the Lib Dems have made it clear that they will be opposing the proposed boundary changes.
Last year the Boundary Commission announced new boundaries for the entire country, but its proposals for this area were broadly condemned, not least by the local MP. The initial proposals left Seaford and Newhaven at the tail end of a new Uckfield constituency which ran all the way up to Surrey.
Despite being in the same constituency as Seaford and Newhaven since 1918, the County Town of Lewes was dumped on the far eastern side of a new Brighton East and Lewes constituency, with Norman calling the proposals "an affront to the County Town which could affect jobs and prosperity".
After Norman's appearance in front of the Boundary Commission and hundreds of letters of objections from concerned constituents, the Boundary Commission agreed to review its proposals and this week the new boundaries were revealed.
Under the revised proposals, Lewes will now fall into a new Lewes and Uckfield constituency which will be mostly rural and take in the rural north of Newhaven. However, Newhaven Town and Seaford will find themselves stuck in the far eastern corner of a stretched out coastal constituency which will run from just west of Ovingdean all the way to encompass Blatchington.
Norman says: "While there are improvements for Lewes, I am very concerned for my constituents in Newhaven and Seaford for which, once again, the Commission has failed to recognise the historical link between the towns and Lewes. I also do not believe, and they would be quite right in feeling this, that Seaford residents will be happy being stuck at the far end of a Brighton constituency, and Newhaven residents will have their town cut in half. Frankly, the Commission has swapped one set of bad proposals for another.
"Notwithstanding that, the simple fact remains that the Conservatives broke the coalition contract by not voting for Lords Reform, so we in the Lib Dems will not be supporting these proposals."
Contact Norman at:
23 East Street,
Tel: (01273) 480281.
Fax: (01273) 480287.