Dorset’s nine existing local councils will cease to exist from April next year, to be replaced by two new unitary authorities.

The secretary of state for housing, communities and local government, the Sajid Javid, has given the final seal of approval to the creation of the new councils.

One will cover Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, while the other will serve residents in the rest of the county.

Each will deliver all local government services in their respective areas. The two new councils are due to go live in April 2019, and, from that date, North Dorset District Council, West Dorset District Council and Weymouth and Portland Borough Council will cease to exist.

Cllr Anthony Alford, leader of West Dorset District Council, said: “This is excellent news. Many of us have been working for a long time now to deliver a vision of better local government.

“We want to deliver good local services within our means, safeguard our unique natural environment, and support people to have a home and develop their careers in Dorset. The final decision by the secretary of state is another milestone on that journey.”

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