The Boundary Commission for Scotland has published Revised Proposals for United Kingdom Parliament constituencies in Scotland as part of its 2018 Review.
This marks the start of an 8 week public consultation process, lasting from Tuesday 17 October 2017 until Monday 11 December 2017.
The UK Parliament has decided to reduce the number of constituencies from 650 to 600. In Scotland this means that 59 constituencies will be reduced to 53.
In the Highlands this means losing one MP, with three MPs will be left to represent 40% of Scotland’s total land mass.
The largest proposed constituency by area is Highland North, at 12,985 square km (currently Ross, Skye and Lochaber at 12,768 square km).
Two of these 53 (Na h-Eileanan an Iar (the Western Isles) and Orkney and Shetland) are defined in the legislation and will not be subject to change.
As set out in legislation, each of the remaining 51 constituencies must not exceed the maximum permitted area of 13,000 square kilometres; and be within five per cent of the UK electoral quota of 74,769.2 (ie to have between 71,031 and 78,507 electors), except where a constituency is larger than 12,000 square kilometres when it may have fewer than 71,031 electors.
Lord Matthews, Deputy Chair of the Boundary Commission for Scotland, said: "After careful consideration of all of the comments received during the consultations on the Initial Proposals, the Commission has designed this revised set of constituencies. Where the legislation has allowed it, we have tried to respond to the views expressed to us. However, in some areas, we have been unable to make changes because of the constraints on constituency design within which we work."
"This is the final opportunity we have to obtain views on our proposals so we can further improve them where the legislation allows us to do so. I hope people will take the opportunity to contribute, whether for or against what we have proposed."
Of the 51 mainland constituencies in the Revised Proposals 12 constituencies are unchanged from the Initial Proposals; 7 constituencies have only their name changed; 11 constituencies have only their boundaries changed; and 21 constituencies have both their name and boundaries changed.
Among the changes from the Initial Proposals are:
changes to the boundary north of Fort William;
32 of the proposed mainland constituencies are within a single council area; no
constituencies contain parts of three or more council areas.
The largest proposed constituency by area is Highland North, at 12,985 square
kilometres (currently Ross, Skye and Lochaber at 12,768 square kilometres).
After considering the responses to this consultation on the Revised Proposals, the Commission will develop its Final Recommendations and submit its report to the Secretary of State in September 2018.
The consultation will run until 11 December 2017. Members of the public and interested parties can get further information and submit views on the Commission’s interactive portal at www.bcs2018.org.uk.
Further information can be found on the Commission’s website here.