An article about the campaign was published in The Grimsby Telegraph on 14th September 2017:
MP backs bid to replace ‘confusing’ North-East Lincolnshire name with simply Lincolnshire.
Cleethorpes Tory MP Martin Vickers is backing the British Counties Campaign which wants to end the use of North East Lincolnshire and North Lincolnshire in addresses.
A local MP is backing a campaign to replace ‘confusing’ place names – including North East Lincolnshire – in favour of the historic Lincolnshire county.
Cleethorpes MP Martin Vickers and Lincolnshire Sir Edward Leigh, both backbench Conservative MPs, put their names to a campaign letter from the British Counties Campaign, which wants a new law reinstating the prominence of historic county names.
Backed by five other MPs, the letter read: “Our 92 counties, many of them 1,000 years old, are a key part of our heritage as geographic and cultural reference points.
“Legislation in the 1960s and 70s caused confusion in county identity by mixing traditional counties with administrative creations.
“Counties must be re-established as standard references for cultural, sporting and other activities.
“A government bill is needed to ensure that ‘county’ refers to traditional counties only, with no separate administrative or ceremonial ‘counties’.”
Mr Vickers, MP for Cleethorpes, said he was proud to call himself “Lincolnshire yellow-belly” and wanted to see an end to “administrative” place-name references, such as North East Lincolnshire and North Lincolnshire, as part of addresses.
“I think this all came about, because Humberside was so hated, that when we eventually found ourselves back in Lincolnshire, we wanted to highlight that fact and – because the council had been called North East Lincolnshire – we picked that up,” said the ex-Scartho councillor.
“That was fine in one sense but county names go back thousands of years and people identify with their village, town and counties,” continued Mr Vickers.
“They don’t normally identify with their unit of local government, which is what North East Lincolnshire is.”
“This [campaign] is not to do with changing local government boundaries. It is just saying that I’m a Lincolnshire yellow-belly and people are proud of their county and calling it North Lincolnshire or North East Lincolnshire waters down that identity.
“We are just as much Lincolnshire folk as those in Grantham or Stamford, or somewhere else similarly in the south of the county.”
Sir Edward, the MP for Market Rasen, and Mr Vickers were joined in signing the letter – which appeared in the Daily Telegraph on Monday – by fellow Tories Sir David Amess, Sir Henry Bellingham, James Gray, and Anne-Marie Trevelyan. The DUP’s Gregory Campbell also put his name to it.
The Association of British Counties, a separate group, has given the campaign its backing.
A spokesman said: “We believe that the historic counties should continue to have a separate identity to local government.
“They are best used as a basis for general-purpose geography, and for cultural and sporting activities.”