OPPOSITION councillors have hit out at the composition of BCP Council’s new cabinet.

Green and Labour figures have criticised its lack of a Christchurch representative and the omission of climate change from any portfolio’s title.

But council leader Drew Mellor hit back, saying he was “committed” to both and promised “more action” than had been delivered by the previous Unity Alliance coalition administration.

As part of his leadership pitch, Cllr Mellor promised his Conservative-led council would be “more inclusive” and consider the views of councillors from across the political spectrum.

But Labour councillors said he had “fallen at the first fence” with the make-up of his cabinet which does not have a Christchurch representative.

And the council’s two Green Party members, councillors Simon Bull and Chris Rigby, criticised the decision not to include climate change in any cabinet role title.

"If the Conservative opposition couldn’t even get behind a simple change to the conurbation through [the active travel measures] which saw roads pedestrianised and opened up for cyclists, scooter users and motorised vehicle users, how can we possibly trust them to deliver on the wide-ranging changes needed here to meet our climate commitments,” Cllr Bull said.

“I don’t have high hopes for many of the other projects identified in the climate and ecological action plan that will be necessary to avert the worst impacts of the twin crisis."

But Cllr Mellor accused the previous coalition administration of not doing enough to deliver environmental improvements and said he would make more progress on the issue.

“Clearly climate change is under the sustainability portfolio and we are 100 per cent committed to the climate and ecological emergency we all signed up to,” he said.

“The Unity Alliance was more hot air over substance on this and it is a priority for us and one we intend to deliver much more on than the previous administration did.”

He said he was willing to work with Christchurch councillors, the majority of whom are Christchurch Independents, but his offers had been rebuffed.

“I couldn’t have been more clear in using the entire post-victory speech that I would like to work with the Christchurch Independents on the same terms as they agreed with Extinction Rebellion and the Corbynistas,” he added.

“But they decided that they can work with people who hold those political views but not Conservatives.”

He said he was planning to “bring forward further roles” for Christchurch representatives but added that “in the Conservative group, Christchurch has 36 champions”.