Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Boundary-change homes could become part of neighbouring village

Houses on the Ballakilley estate Image copyright PhIL GAWNE
Image caption Seventy-eight of the homes on the estate currently fall within Rushen parish

Seventy-eight houses on the Isle of Man could become part of a neighbouring village if proposed boundary changes are backed by politicians.

The homes on the Ballakilley estate in Rushen parish could be absorbed into Port Erin village after an independent inquiry recommended the move.

The proposed changes will be debated at the July sitting of Tynwald.

However, Rushen Parish Commissioners said they were "very disappointed" with the decision.

The changes, which would lead to a loss of about 10% of the authority's rate income, would cause "significant damage" to the parish and parishioners, they said.

Port Erin Commissioners said they "welcomed" the decision and the board would "continue working closely with our neighbouring authority".

An average increase in rates for the houses affected would be about £250, which would be phased in over 10 years.

The remit of the inquiry excluded the consideration of the impact of the changes on the collection of rates.

Image copyright PhIL GAWNE
Image caption There are about 170 houses in the Ballakilley estate

Construction of the nearly 170-house development, which is just off the A29 in the south of the island, started in 2013.

The Port Erin board applied to the department of infrastructure to have its boundary extended to include the whole of the residential estate.

Following a public consultation an independent inquiry was held, which recommended the houses become part of the neighbouring local authority.

If the boundary extension is approved, adjoining recreational land would remain within the parish of Rushen.

Development of amenities on that land is set to cost the authority about £100,000.

A spokesman for Rushen Commissioners said the "shock" decision was "against natural justice", adding that larger local authorities "seem to be being rewarded with the extra rate income and we're left with the expense".

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