A businessman and former Bournemouth council leader has effectively urged Christchurch councillors to come to their senses over merger proposals.

And he has attacked the town’s MP Christopher Chope for opposing joining up with Bournemouth. Removals firm boss, David Trenchard, has written to them and says he is “very disappointed the council seems to prefer to back the local MP in one of his personal crusades against change or progress rather than consider what is really best for this community.”

Plans to reorganise the current nine councils into two are sitting on the desk of communities secretary, Sajid Javid, awaiting a decision.

Mr Trenchard, Tory leader of Bournemouth in the eighties said the area needed better management and governance.

He said: “I am now most concerned because the much needed reorganisation of local government seems to be in danger of stalling, held up by the same MP who stopped the vital reorganisation of the local hospitals four years ago.”

Mr Trenchard says his business, Leatherbarrows, has been based in Christchurch for 35 years and employs over 40 staff.

He adds: “Those of us in Christchurch have much to gain from the proposals to bring control and strategic planning closer to us and involve only local people within the conurbation who are well aware of issues and priorities.”

“It seems unfair, for example, that the development at Roeshot Hill is getting the green light without the land owner or developer having to help sort out the long term traffic bypass but waiting for later when we will be desperate to have the clogged roads cleared.

“A conurbation-wide strategic authority should be able to get these things that Dorset (county council) ignores and get some action.”

“To those of you who have voted against this new proposal please reconsider your position.

“A final plea – your own staff are being excluded from the discussions on new appointments, they need to have the same opportunities as the staff in Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth to apply for the new posts being created – do not exclude them the equal opportunity for their future employment and careers.”

But in a two page response, Christchurch and Dorset councillor, David Jones, said: “Who is to say that the priorities of the people of Christchurch would be the priorities of the new Greater Bournemouth? I have frequently asked what will Christchurch get out of this. The silence has been deafening.”

He added: “You say that business supports the Greater Bournemouth plan. In the recent local elections, the businessmen I met were desperate to avoid the clutches of Bournemouth and in the whole of Burton and Grange I met just one resident who supported the scheme.