A webpage engaging computer-savvy residents with local democracy in Merton has attracted a following of just 20 people compared to thousands using the pages of surrounding boroughs.

Merton Council’s Twitter page has 20 followers compared to Lambeth’s 1,103, Kingston’s 475, Sutton’s 373 and Croydon’s 355.

But London appears to be leading the pack of councils using Twitter to engage with voters, with 72 per cent now using the social networking tool, compared to the national average of 42 per cent.

Andrew Beckhaus, of ntl:Telewest Business, the company to commission research into local authorities’ communication techniques, said. “As more and more people embrace social networking sites such as Twitter, councils can use these new channels to provide information, interact with their local community and create ongoing dialogue.”

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