Nunthorpe, North Yorkshire? What Readers Had to Say. Poll Result Narrowly in Favour
Byline: MIKE MORGAN firstname.lastname@example.org
GAZETTE readers have narrowly voted in favour of Nunthorpe being allowed to swap Middlesbrough for North Yorkshire. Just over half of the more than 800 people who took part in our survey say that the estate should be able to switch to being under the control of neighbouring Hambleton Council.
There were 430 votes in favour of the move - or 53.3% - with 46.7% against (376 votes).
The result adds further fuel to the debate triggered by Nunthorpe Parish Council's recent poll of the estate's residents.
And it has prompted Middlesbrough Mayor Ray Mallon to state that the desire for a breakaway is not the "universal view" of Nunthorpe residents.
As previously reported, an informal referendum of residents by the parish council found that 76% of Nunthorpe residents who completed the survey wanted to join the district of Hambleton.
In that poll, 793 votes were cast - a turnout of 19% of those eligible to vote in the area.
And 604 were in favour of the move, 149 (18%) were against and 49 (6%) were undecided.
The Gazette's referendum widened the poll out to beyond Nunthorpe.
But Councillor Peter Sanderson, a Nunthorpe ward representative on Middlesbrough Council, claims that because the Gazette poll is open to all it is "less meaningful".
"There are about 4,500 residents in the Nunthorpe area and so a much greater majority would have to be in favour of this," he said."
"I'm a resident of Nunthorpe and have the interests of Nunthorpe at heart."
Nunthorpe has previously been a part of North Yorkshire - before the county borough of Teesside was set up in 1968.
It then became part of Cleveland County in 1974 and of the Middlesbrough Council unitary authority in 1996.
The borough's Mayor Ray Mallon is on record as saying Nunthorpe is an "integral" part of the town - and that he would be loathe for it to break away.
"I can understand the frustration of some members of the public from Nunthorpe who have recently advanced the proposition of breaking away from Middlesbrough, on the basis that they feel I am not listening to them or delivering value for money in respect of their council tax contribution," he said in a statement yesterday. …