Stand for what you believe in
Become a Parish or Town Councillor
The best way to find out what it’s like to be a Parish or Town councillor is to talk to someone who’s doing it now. Your Parish or Town council will have a website where you will be able to get the names and contact details of the current clerk and councillors, and the dates of their meetings. Council meetings are open to the public and you can go along to a Parish or Town council meeting, speak to one of the councillors and find out what they think of the job they do.
By becoming a Parish or Town councillor you become someone your community will look to for help, guidance and support as a community leader with the power to influence decisions for the benefit of the people you serve.
To stand for election to a Parish or Town council, you must:
- be a UK or Commonwealth citizen; or be a citizen of the Republic of Ireland; or be a citizen of another Member state of the European Union
- be at least 18 years old
To be eligible to stand for election for a particular Parish or Town you don’t have to be connected to a political party but you must:
- be an elector of the Parish or Town or in the past 12 months have occupied land or other premises in the Parish or Town (as owner or tenant) or work in the Parish or Town (as your principal or only place of work) or live within three miles of the Parish or Town boundary
What do Parish or Town councils do?
A Parish or Town or Town council is a local authority that makes decisions on behalf of the people in the Parish or Town. It is the level of local government closest to the community, with the district authority and the county authority or a principal authority further up the hierarchy.
Parish or Town councils make all kinds of decisions on issues that affect the local community. Probably the most common topics that Parish or Town councils get involved with are planning matters (they are statutory consultees), crime prevention and roads & highways.
Parish or Town councils have a number of powers they can use and have the ability to negotiate with other decision-making organisations such as the district, county or unitary councils, health authorities, police etc. In this respect Parish or Town councils are extremely powerful. These organisations know that a Parish or Town council gives the best reflection of how a community feels about something and its views should be taken seriously.
How much time does it take up?
Councils usually meet once a month for the council meeting to which members of the public are also invited. Meetings may last two or three hours, depending on what’s on the list of items to discuss. Some councils may also have committees to deal with specific subjects, such as planning matters.
How long do I serve for as a Parish or Town Councillor?
Once elected, Parish or Town councillors sit on the council for four years. If they then want to stay in the post they can stand for re-election. This does not mean that you have to stay for four years. If you find it’s not for you, or you can no longer meet the commitment, you can stand down.
For more information please contact the Clerk on 07958055158 or email firstname.lastname@example.org