Contrary to some of the recent viewpoints expressed, we write in strong support of the need for Craven residents to respond to the Government’s consultation on Local Government Reorganisation. Although the timing is wrong, coming as it does before, rather than after, the promised publication of the White Paper on Devolution and at a time when county and district councillor elections have been suspended until May, 2022, it is nonetheless our only chance of making our opinions known. The public’s views are extremely important in demonstrating that we are not indifferent to the future governance of our area and have constructive contributions to make.

Local government is about far more than planning applications and emptying bins. It shapes the ongoing sustainability of our local towns, villages and outlying communities by taking account of the interconnected needs for business and job opportunities, affordable housing, schools, medical and social care provision and good transport links, which enable these communities to thrive.

We cannot just assume that things will carry on much as before. We need committed and knowledgeable people who understand the communities in which they live and work to be at the forefront of decision-making. As trustees of North Craven Heritage Trust, an organisation with a strong concern for the future well-being of Craven, we urge everyone to make their opinions known before the deadline of 19 April. The consultation questionnaire: enables people to submit their views on both the unitary and east-west proposals and the final question in each section gives space for more general comments, e.g. on the timing of the process. There is also the opportunity to email responses or send them in the form of a letter. The Trust’s own response will be posted on our website www.

Let’s show how much we all care about our future.

Pam Jordan, Chair, North Craven Heritage Trust

Anne Read, President, North Craven Heritage Trust