MP Lidington: “Councils must work together on unitary proposal”

David Lidington
David Lidington
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Both councils must work together if Aylesbury Vale is to break away from Buckinghamshire.

That is the message from MP David Lidington, responding to news that Aylesbury Vale District Council is set to explore ways to go unitary.

Mr Lidington, MP for Aylesbury, said that while finding ways to save money is essential for both councils, services must not be allowed to suffer.

He said: “Both of the local authorities need to work through the details and talk to each other about this.

“They need to think about what it means for everyone.

“We need to have a system in place for Bucks as a whole, there’s a lot of future work to do.”

He added: “What is certain is that local councils will continue to be under pressure to cut costs, that is the reality no matter what the outcome of the general election is.

“In my view local councils so continue to work to pool their back office functions like payroll, so we need to have two councils providing all of these ancillary services?”

Mr Lidington’s comments come after Neil Blake, leader of Aylesbury Vale District Council announced that his authority would look to break away from Bucks, by looking for support to explore a unitary option.

But the announcement was made on the very same day that Bucks County Council leader Martin Tett announced that his council would be joining forces with Oxfordshire and Northamptonshire councils to pool resources and some services.

Mr Tett later claimed that he did not know the unitary announcement was going to be made.