TOWN councillors have unanimously disagreed with proposals to redraw Halstead’s election boundaries.

Councillors met on Monday to discuss potential plans for a new parliamentary constituency.

It comes after the Boundary Commission unveiled plans to reshape a number of boundaries.

Currently, Halstead is part of the Braintree constituency, where James Cleverly is its MP.

Halstead became part of the constituency in 2010 when Brooks Newmark was MP. It was previously part of the Saffron Walden seat.

But the new proposals, which are still subject to change and development, could see Halstead form a constituency with Haverhill, in Suffolk.

The new constituency would officially become the Haverhill and Halstead County Constituency, with an electorate of 70,787 people.

The likely reason behind the new proposal is to adjust the population in each seat to between 69,724 and 77,602.

The new constituency would reach from the Haverhill to as far south as Gosfield and the Colnes.

But Halstead councillors say they disagree with the proposals.

The council outlined a number of issues such as how the seat is in two counties and Halstead’s link to Braintree, Colchester and Essex for important services.

The council argue the plans to merge two towns from different counties has "no regard for existing boundaries and local ties."

Halstead mayor Mick Radley said: “Following publication of the Boundary Commission 2021 proposals the council agreed a response to the changes.

“The council is in unanimous disagreement with the proposals and sees the idea of combining Halstead with Haverhill into one constituency as detrimental to the interests of the residents of Halstead and have cited many reasons supporting their arguments.

“The council hopes the well-reasoned arguments will cause the commission to rethink and adopt a more appropriate approach.”

A counter proposal by council would be to bring "Halstead, Gosfield and Greenstead Green, and the Colnes back into the Braintree district where they belong and into the Braintree constituency."

The council response added: "In 2018, an application was made by settlements in the Colne Valley including White Colne, Wakes Colne, Chappel, Earls Colne, Colne Engaine, Halstead, Halstead Rural and Great Yeldham to be considered an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

"Such applications may take 20 years to come to fruition, but the grouping of these towns and villages together emphasises the links between them.

"These villages close to Halstead identify with Halstead and rely on the infrastructure provided by the doctors' surgery and the schools and shops.

"The addition of these villages would add almost 10,000 population to the existing 12, 161 of Halstead, making an addition of 22,161 to the Braintree constituency.

"It should be possible through minor adjustments to the surrounding constituencies in Essex to accommodate this extra number of residents in the Braintree district.

"This is seen as essential to retaining the identity of Halstead, of which its residents are very proud."