WOULD YOU MAKE A GOOD PARISH COUNCILLOR?
Have you ever considered volunteering to become a Parish Councillor? If the answer is no, then you should reconsider.
Here are a few reasons why you should give the role your consideration:
- You would like to help keep the Parish a desirable place to live
- If you’re female or under 25 then have a good think, as women and youngsters are under-represented in local authorities
- You are interested in planning and development
- Be a voice for the people of the Parish
- Training and support are available
- As a resident your opinions are important
Why become a Parish Councillor?
Seeing your community change for the better, as a result of decisions you have helped to make, is something that can give you a sense of achievement and pride. The Parish Council helps to ensure the area continues to be a desirable place to live, go to school, work and visit.
What decisions do Parish Councils make?
Parish councils make all kinds of decisions on issues that affect their local community. Probably the most common topics are planning matters, highways issues and campaigning for and delivering better services and facilities. It’s true to say that on their own, parish councils have limited powers to make decisions, but they do have the ability to negotiate with, and the power to influence, those other organisations that do make the final decisions. In this respect parish councils are extremely powerful.
How much time does it take up?
We meet 10 times p.a. Meetings usually last three hours, depending on the agenda set for the meeting to discuss. In addition to the regular meetings, councillors are occasionally required to attend other meetings. Such meetings won’t happen too frequently, so it’s not going to take over your life.
What support is there?
The Parish Council is supported by NCALC, which offers advice and training. The other councillors are friendly and always there to help. The role of the Clerk is to support the Parish Council. The clerk carries out administration tasks, acts as legal adviser/researcher and liaises with outside agencies. The role of parish councillor is voluntary but expenses can be paid. We have a training budget for Councillors to attend any training course they require to carry out their duties.
Don’t take our word for it! The best way to find out what it’s like to be a parish councillor is to talk to someone who’s doing it now. Come along to a Parish Council meeting, or speak to one of our councillors and find out what they think of the role, or contact the Clerk.