Conservatives ready to cull Kirklees

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THE Conservative Party announced yesterday what it called the biggest proposed change in West Yorkshire local government since 1973.

The respective leaders of the Kirklees and Calderdale Conservative groups, Robert Light and Stephen Baines, want to wipe Kirklees from the map with the creation of two new councils, one in the north (Dewsbury & Spen) and one in the south (Greater Huddersfield). Calderdale would have its wards reorganised but would retain its boundaries and have an equal status with each of the new Kirklees area councils.

The changes – if implemented – would mean the three councils would be separate entities while sharing a chief executive and five other directors who would run the councils with fewer second and third tier managers.

Calderdale is run by a Lib Dem/Labour coalition while Kirklees has a Labour leader, and the changes could only be implemented if both councils agreed and if they were sanctioned by the Government.