Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Letter: Going single in the shires

Sir: Over recent months, there has been considerable publicity about the local government review, particularly from those who are opposed to change. We, 164 district council chief executives, think it is important at this time to make it clear that a very high proportion of chief executives in shire England strongly support the need for the local government review.

Our case is simple but, we believe, compelling. First, we consider that a single-tier structure of local government in England, replacing the current two-tier system, will in most areas produce a stronger, more efficient system of local government.

Second, a single-tier system will remove the confusion that currently exists over who provides which services; and in doing so will make local government far more accountable to the people it serves.

Yours faithfully,

GRAHAM ESSEX-CROSBY (Blackpool), ANNIE RALPH (Braintree), CHRIS SHEPHERD (Dartford), BOB SYMONS (Daventry), ROGER A. WILLIS (Forest of Dean), TONY GEE (Huntingdonshire), PETER HYDE (New Forest), DAVID MONKS (North Warwickshire), ALISON STONE (Plymouth), MEL USHER (South Somerset), GEOFFREY BLACKER (Windsor & Maidenhead), DAVID HUTCHINSON (Wrekin) and 152 other district council chief executives

Association of District Councils

London, SW1

19 April