New ‘Southgate and Wood Green’ and ‘Edmonton and Winchmore Hill’ seats agreed

Move to merge Southgate with Wood Green to create new cross-borough constituency was “heavily opposed” but is set to go ahead regardless

Southgate and Wood Green will form a new constituency
Southgate and Wood Green will form a new constituency

The Boundary Commission for England (BCE) has decided to go ahead with its plans to create a new ‘Southgate and Wood Green’ parliamentary constituency despite admitting the change has been “heavily opposed”.

In its final proposals that are now set to be agreed by parliament and enforced ahead of next year’s expected general election, a new ‘Edmonton and Winchmore Hill’ constituency is also formed, with Enfield North remaining largely unchanged from its present boundaries.

While BCE has been working on its redrawing of constituency boundaries for several years – in an attempt to see MPs more fairly distributed across the UK and to account for population changes – the plan to create a Southgate and Wood Green seat was only revealed for the first time last December.

A public consultation followed and BCE admits that it faced opposition to the idea of uniting voters in Enfield and Haringey along the Piccadilly Line because it would “break community ties” in both boroughs.

Enfield Southgate is a famously marginal seat and was held by the Conservative Party as recently as 2017, but merging it with Wood Green seems likely to make it a safe Labour seat in future.

BCE’s final report published this week stated: “In the borough of Enfield, our revised proposals were heavily opposed for a number of reasons. In objecting to our reconfiguration of Enfield Southgate across three constituencies, one of which would extend into Haringey to create a Southgate and Wood Green constituency which crossed borough boundaries and the A406, respondents told us that there was little community of interest spanning such a long and thin area.”

Over in Edmonton, the Winchmore Hill, Highfield and Grange Park wards in western Enfield are now being added to the constituency, which BCE announced this week would be renamed ‘Edmonton and Winchmore Hill’ as a result. It means that the borough’s most deprived and least deprived areas will be united under a single MP.

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Enfield North is the least affected by BCE’s boundary changes, but the final proposals do see the addition of Ponders End to the seat, while Grange Park is in turn removed to join Edmonton.

A map of BCE's final constituency proposal for Enfield
A map of BCE’s final constituency proposal for Enfield

Enfield Southgate MP Bambos Charalambous commented on the boundary changes in his weekly newsletter. He said: “The new boundary will see my constituency joined with Bounds Green, Noel Park, White Hart Lane and Woodside wards in Haringey, and I look forward to meeting residents from these areas and representing them in Parliament if elected.

“The proposals will also see the current Enfield Southgate seat lose Winchmore Hill, Grange Park, and Highfield wards to a new Edmonton and Winchmore Hill constituency. I will be sad to lose these wards, having built very strong relationships and friendships with schools, businesses and residents in these areas.

“The Boundary Commission did reflect on evidence received during the consultation suggesting that Grange Park and Winchmore Hill wards should be kept together in the same constituency. This proposal has been adopted by including these wards in a new Edmonton and Winchmore Hill constituency.”

Enfield North MP Feryal Clark has welcomed the retention of the majority of her constituency. She said: “I am really pleased to see minimal changes in the Boundary Commission’s final recommendations.

“Enfield North will continue as a constituency by name and by the area it represents.

“The only major change we have in the final recommendations is the inclusion of Ponders End in Enfield North. This makes sense in terms of historical, industrial and community precedence.

“I will remain the Member of Parliament of Enfield North until the election, so if you have any concerns, please contact my office as usual.

“At the next election, I will again be standing as the Labour Party’s candidate for Enfield North, and I hope residents will continue to put their faith in me as their elected representative.”

Edmonton MP Kate Osamor did not respond to requests for comment.

View an interactive map of the new parliamentary boundaries for Enfield:

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