North Weston residents feel council has wiped village off map
RESIDENTS in North Weston claim they have had their village "wiped off the map" after councillors agreed a name change.
Councillors voted in favour of changing the name of Portishead and North Weston Town Council to just Portishead Town Council.
The move came after council leaders said they felt the town was growing at such a massive rate that North Weston should be included under the general area of Portishead.
But the move has not been welcomed by villagers, who say they liked the fact North Weston had its own identity.
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Rosemary Walker, 73, of Underwood Road, has lived in North Weston all her life and said: "I have always lived in North Weston and we have always had our own identity.
"It seems as if the council just wants to take everything away from us. I do not want to see North Weston just become another suburb of Portishead, like all the new developments."
Mrs Walker's husband, Graham, 70, who is also a town councillor representing North Weston, said: "It seems as if North Weston has been taken off the map. We used to have our own parish council before we joined Portishead and now we are at risk of disappearing completely."
Pensioner Sue Turner, of North Weston, said: "We like the fact that North Weston stands alone rather than just being part of Portishead.
"My question to the council is if it isn't broke, why fix it?"
Portishead and North Weston Parish Council were amalgamated in 1993 as part of the local government re-organisation to become Portishead and North Weston Town Council.
Currently the council is made up of 18 councillors, three of whom represent North Weston.
This is not the first time councillors have tried to change the name used by Portishead Town Council. A similar change was mooted several years ago, but was dropped after council members raised concerns.
Councillor Alan McMurray, who represents North Weston ward, said: "I am bitterly disappointed that this change to the name has been agreed, especially as I voted against it. I think the change has meant a piece of the town's history has been lost.
"I have lived in North Weston for 25 years and we all accept we are part of Portishead, but the residents enjoyed having their own stand-alone identity."
Portishead Town Council chairman Councillor Barry Walters said: "The town is growing at such a fast rate, the council thought it made sense to bring North Weston into Portishead.
"There are other parts of the town, such as Redcliffe Bay, which are included as part of Portishead Town Council and we did not see why North Weston should be any different."