Major changes could be coming to the council structure in several Cotswold towns.

Plans for a proposed merger of the Stratford-on-Avon and Warwick District Council’s will be taken up a gear next week, with a discussion planned for the cabinet meetings on Thursday, December 9.

Councillors will discuss the report, available here, which sets out the plan to create one, all-encompassing, South Warwickshire District Council.

Shipston is one of several local towns and villages that would be affected by such a decision along with the likes of Bidford and Quinton, all currently part of Stratford-on-Avon DC.

Council leader Tony Jefferson said: “Since the beginning of the year, additional research and evidence has been collected to enable both Councils to now consider whether we wish to make a formal submission to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) to create this new entity.

“This is probably the most significant decision that either Council has had to consider since they were established in 1974.

“We have to take this decision recognising that the world has changed massively since 1974. It is now up to us to make the right decision based on the information presented to us.”

Meanwhile councillor Andrew Day, leader of Warwick DC said: “It’s encouraging to see that our residents and other stakeholders do see the need for change and clearly support the proposals to merge our Councils.

“This positive feedback underlines the importance of working together to continue to improve our services in a fiscally responsible way.

“This independent consultation report provides councillors with a balanced and comprehensive view on the hopes and aspirations for our local government across South Warwickshire in the future.

“Councillors now have all the information required, including insightful comments and suggestions gathered by the survey, to make their historic decision on the shape of local Government in South Warwickshire for the next 50 years.”

Following the meeting, both cabinets will have to make a formal request to the Secretary of State at the DLUHC to create the merged council or to reject the proposal.

This decision will then be considered by both full councils on Monday, December 13.