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BLACKBURN WITH DARWEN is a unitary authority area in Lancashire, North West England. It consists of Blackburn
Blackburn
, the small town of Darwen
Darwen
to the south of it, and the surrounding countryside. The population of the Unitary Authority
Unitary Authority
taken at the 2011 census was 147,489.

CONTENTS

* 1 Formation * 2 Demographics

* 3 Local elections

* 3.1 Local elections

* 4 Economy * 5 Neighbouring districts and political control

* 6 Settlements

* 6.1 Civil parishes

* 7 Education * 8 Transport * 9 See also * 10 References

* 11 External links

* 11.1 Council political parties

FORMATION

It was founded in 1974 as the Lancashire
Lancashire
borough of Blackburn, from the County Borough
Borough
of Blackburn
Blackburn
, the Borough
Borough
of Darwen
Darwen
, parts of Turton Urban District (chiefly the villages of Belmont , Chapeltown and Edgworth ) and parts of Blackburn
Blackburn
Rural District . It was renamed in May 1997, in preparation for a split from Lancashire
Lancashire
County Council . On 1 April 1998 it became a unitary authority.

DEMOGRAPHICS

The proportion of Muslim population (19.4% or 26,674 people) is the third highest among all local authorities in the United Kingdom and the highest outside London. 20.4% of the districts population belongs to any South Asian ethnic group, making it the highest percentage in the region, and almost four times higher than national average of South Asians.

According to the 2011 census , the proportion of Muslims increased to 27%.

LOCAL ELECTIONS

Main article: Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
local elections

There is a total of 64 seats on the council with the borough is divided up into 23 wards , all with three councillors with the exception of Earcroft, Whitehall, and North Turton
North Turton
and Tockholes, which have 2 members, and East Rural which has one.

LOCAL ELECTIONS

Current makeup of Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
Council PARTIES SEATS

Labour 48

Conservative 12

Liberal Democrat 4

TOTAL 64

The council was shaken in 2004 when six Labour councillors quit the ruling group one month after an election and became independent representatives, and the council temporarily fell into no overall control. The councillors, who eventually re-joined the party, left over an internal row reportedly sparked by the demotion of particular councillors in a post-election reshuffle. Allegations of vote-rigging and corruption have dogged the council, with members of the Muslim community reportedly being "strong-armed by mosque leaders and councillors to vote Labour" during elections. The possibility of corruption has been eased by reforms to postal voting which have made electoral fraud "childishly simple" in the UK according to a European watchdog. The number of postal votes registered in Blackburn
Blackburn
in 2005 was 20,000, compared to 7,600 in 2001. In April 2005, local councillor Mohammed Hussain was jailed for three years for rigging the 2002 town hall election by stealing at least 230 postal vote ballots in his ward.

The local elections of May 2007 saw a coalition of parties take control of the council from Labour. The small For Darwen
Darwen
party and independents held the fine balance of power on the council in a partnership with the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. Like its predecessor, the ruling administration also attracted controversy; one of its councillors being suspended following a conviction for benefit fraud and another following allegations of domestic abuse . Tensions over the presence of former England First Party member Michael Johnson within the coalition as part of For Darwen
Darwen
rose to the surface when Johnson was quoted in The Sun newspaper in October 2007 blaming his unemployment on "all the immigrants flooding this country." "These people take our jobs and it will only get worse", he said. Three weeks before local elections in May 2008, a Liberal Democrat candidate for Shear Brow ward caused a stir by defecting to Labour.

In 2010, two For Darwen
Darwen
Party councillors resigned and withdrew their support for the coalition, and after a vote of no confidence the Labour Party regained control of the council. In 2011 Labour gained control of the council.

ECONOMY

This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of Blackburn with Darwen
Darwen
at current basic prices published (pp. 240–253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.

YEAR REGIONAL GROSS VALUE ADDED AGRICULTURE INDUSTRY SERVICES

1995 1,496 3 755 737

2000 1,597 3 678 916

2003 1,785 4 647 1,134

NEIGHBOURING DISTRICTS AND POLITICAL CONTROL

The authority borders with boroughs administered as within the Greater Manchester
Greater Manchester
and Lancashire
Lancashire
upper-tier local authorities: Chorley
Chorley
in the west and then (clockwise) South Ribble
South Ribble
, Ribble Valley , Hyndburn
Hyndburn
and Rossendale
Rossendale
in Lancashire; Bury and Bolton in Greater Manchester. The data below is based on June 2012.

THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT DISTRICTS THAT SURROUND BLACKBURN WITH DARWEN

South Ribble
South Ribble
Conservative Ribble Valley Conservative Hyndburn
Hyndburn
Labour

Chorley
Chorley
Labour BLACKBURN WITH DARWEN

Rossendale
Rossendale
Labour

Bury Labour

Bolton Labour

SETTLEMENTS

BLACKBURN DARWEN Bank Fold
Bank Fold
Bank Hey Beardwood Belmont Belthorn
Belthorn
Blackamoor Brownhill Cadshaw Chapeltown Cherry Tree Edgworth Entwistle Feniscowles Grimshaw Guide Hoddlesden
Hoddlesden
Little Harwood
Little Harwood
Lower Darwen
Darwen
Pickup Bank Pleasington
Pleasington
Tockholes
Tockholes
Waterside Whalley Range Whitebirk Great Hill Winter Hill Towns, suburbs, villages and hills in the Borough
Borough
of Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen

CIVIL PARISHES

* Darwen
Darwen
(town council) * Eccleshill * Livesey
Livesey
* North Turton
North Turton
* Pleasington
Pleasington
* Tockholes
Tockholes
* Yate and Pickup Bank

EDUCATION

Main article: List of schools in Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen

As a unitary authority, Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
authority has a statutory responsibility for educational standards and schooling within its boundaries.

TRANSPORT

Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
Council has a stated transport policy of "making roads traffic free".

SEE ALSO

* Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
Teaching Primary Care Trust

REFERENCES

Wikimedia Commons has media related to BOROUGH OF BLACKBURN WITH DARWEN .

* ^ " Unitary Authority
Unitary Authority
population 2011". Retrieved 15 January 2016.

* ^ Neighbourhood Statistics. "Neighbourhood Statistics". Neighbourhood Statistics. Retrieved 7 May 2012. * ^ A B WE QUIT! Six labour councillors leave, Lancashire
Lancashire
Evening Telegraph , 16 June 2004. * ^ Labour councillors ditching party, BBC News
BBC News
, 16 June 2004 * ^ A B Straw\'s seat is a hot-spot of postal vote fraud claims, Anne Penketh, The Independent
The Independent
, 4 May 2005 * ^ Voting open to \'childishly simple\' fraud, says watchdog, Andrew Sparrow, The Guardian
The Guardian
, 22 January 2008 * ^ Vote-rigging Crackdown, Lancashire
Lancashire
Telegraph, 24 January 2007. Retrieved 31 January 2007. * ^ Benefit fraud councillor \'should quit now\', Tom Moseley, Lancashire
Lancashire
Telegraph , 17 November 2008 * ^ Lib Dem councillor suspended by his party, Tom Moseley, Lancashire
Lancashire
Telegraph , 25 March 2008 * ^ Burning issue: Immigration, The Sun , 18 October 2007 * ^ Election in turmoil as LibDem candidate says: I\'m a Labour supporter, Tom Moseley, Lancashire
Lancashire
Telegraph , 9 April 2008 * ^ Labour back in control of Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen, David Watkinson, Lancashire
Lancashire
Telegraph , 14 September 2010 * ^ Components may not sum to totals due to rounding * ^ includes hunting and forestry * ^ includes energy and construction * ^ includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured * ^ Types of Council * ^ Blackburn
Blackburn
with Darwen
Darwen
Council. "Transport & streets policies & strategies". Retrieved 27 May 2017.