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Bath and North East Somerset

Bath and North East Somerset (commonly referred to as BANES) is an English unitary local government authority that was created in 1996 following the abolition of Avon County Council, and an administrative county in its own right.

Bath is the principal town but BANES also covers Keynsham, Radstock and Midsomer Norton.

Since it was created the BANES council has been in no overall control. The Liberal Democrats quickly became the dominant party, but in the local elections on May 1, 2003 the Conservative Party won ten seats and are almost neck and neck with the Lib Dems. The Labour Party only have six seats, none of which are in Bath.

Local issues include traffic calming measures, graffiti, council tax and the new Bath Spa development.

BANES is often criticised for being divided between Bath and North East Somerset, with Bath getting most of the investment and attention from the council. However it is Bath residents who are campaigning for a return to a Bath city council as it existed under the Avon County Council.

The county borders Bristol, North Somerset, Somerset, South Gloucestershire, and Wiltshire.

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