Become a Parish Councillor
Notice of Vacancy
Hemswell Parish Council currently has three vacancies and anyone interested in becoming a Parish Councillor is encouraged to apply for the role. The Council is allowed to 'co-opt' a councillor to fill the vacancies and we'd love to hear from you if you want to get involved.
You don't have to be a member of a political party to be a councillor, you just need to be keen, enthusiastic and willing to help make a difference in your local community. Maybe you've lived in Hemswell or Harpswell for a long time and have ideas on what will help the area and people who live here?, perhaps you've got a skill or specialism that might benefit the village and its residents?, maybe you just want to get involved and play a part in local government?
A Parish Councillor is a voluntary, unpaid position, and during your period of office you would be expected to attend parish meetings as a minimum requirement. Upon election, each member must register any interests they may have that might affect their work as councillor, for example, land holdings or allotments, and agree to abide by the Hemswell Parish Council Code of Conduct. Beyond regular parish council meetings, Parish Councillors can get as involved as they wish in parish affairs and there are always opportunities for keen councillors to develop and lead on their own projects or ideas to benefit the parish.
Your parish council has an overall responsibility for the well-being of your local neighbourhood and its work falls into three main categories: • Representing the local community • Delivering services to meet local needs • Striving to improve the quality of life in the local area. Your council wants to work with and consult the local residents, for example via the Neighbourhood Plan and the Annual Parish Meeting, to establish policies and plans for action, and to decide how monies will be raised and spent on behalf of the community. It has a duty to spend the funds it raises to get the best value for money, without risk to the community or council and lawfully.
To qualify as a councillor, you must be able to answer 'YES' to at least one of these questions:
1. Are you registered as a local government elector on the current Electoral Register for the Parish?
2. In the whole of the previous 12 months, have you occupied as tenant or owner of any land, or other premises in the Parish?
3. Has your principal or only place of work been within the Parish over the previous 12 months?
4. Have you resided either in the Parish or within 4.8 kilometres (3 miles) of it during the previous 12 months?
You can find further details on the National Association of Local Councils (nalc) website and in the nalc Good Councillor Guide (2017 version pdf document). Speak to the clerk if you'd like to know more about the qualifying criteria.
You may have heard of Jackie Weaver after a Zoom video of a council meeting went viral during COVID-19 lockdown - if not, see what she says about being a local councillor in this short YouTube video! (Video opens in new browser window).
For further information, or to register your interest, please contact the Clerk.