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This is the Henstridge Parish Council - What We Do! Page

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What we do!

Did you know that your local councillors are consulted on nearly everything that happens in your area? They take an active part in deciding what services are and are not provided and that affects you and your family!

Parish Councils are responsible for many things like: bus shelters, litter bins and parks, to name but a few. They are also consulted on planning applications, highway improvements, street signs, grant funding and projects that affect where you live and what facilities your community has or receives.

Local councils are delivering more services for residents than ever before and with changes to legislation Parish Councils may be in a position to do even more in the future.

Parish Councillors live side by side with you in your community; they are the most local level of government, being easily contacted and directly answerable to the community every time they walk out of their front doors. They raise money primarily through your council tax to administer their decisions.

What is a Parish Council?

There are over 9,000 parish and town councils in England and they form the tier of local government closest to the people.

Parish and town councils are self-governing local authorities composed of representatives elected by parishioners to make decisions and speak on their behalf.

A Parish Council represents and serves the whole community. It is responsible for the services it provides and for achieving the best value for the spending of public money.

The Council is a ‘corporate body’, which means it exists as a legal entity, and the decisions it takes are the responsibility of the Council as a whole. Individual members of the Parish Council, including the Chair, have no statutory authority on their own.

Any parish council can call itself a "town council" if it considers it appropriate to do so and is in an urban area, and the chairman of a town council may be called a "town mayor". Town Councils however, have no greater powers than Parish Councils, although they may choose to use more of the powers open to them.

Parish Councils have a limited number of duties, but they do, however, have wide powers, should they decide to use them and they may, with agreement of the district or county council, exercise certain functions normally carried out by those councils.

By their very nature, parish councils aim to maintain a close relationship with the local community. Henstridge Parish Council encourage the public to put forward issues for the agenda, and to attend council meetings as observers or to participate in the open forum at the start of meetings. The Council are obliged to organise at least one parish meeting each year which all local electors may attend and may raise issues of local concern.

So what about the Parish Council in Henstridge?

The parish of Henstridge (which includes Yenston and Bowden) has a population of just over 1,500, with some 649 properties (ref 2001 Census). Henstridge Parish Council consists of 13 members, all of whom were elected in May 2007 and will stand for a four year term of office.

Full Council meetings are held monthly, with planning meetings being held twice monthly as necessary to try to ensure that the views of the Parish are always represented within the consultation periods allowed. The Annual Parish Meeting is usually held in May. Dates for all meetings can be found on the notice boards in Henstridge and Yenston and on our website.

Henstridge Parish Council’s clerk is employed to attend and keep minutes of Parish Council meetings, to ensure that the business of the council is lawful and to carry out the tasks and resolutions made by the council. The role is run as a job share, with one person taking responsibility for the day to day running of the Council and acting as the Proper Officer, and one dealing with the planning and finance matters and acting as the Responsible Financial Officer.

At the current time, the Parish Council, on behalf of the residents:

  • Owns, manages and maintains the cemetery in Furge Grove.

  • Owns, manages and maintains the playing fields at Ash Walk.

  • Owns, manages and maintains the children's play area at Ash Walk.

  • Owns, manages and maintains the allotment gardens at Furge Lane.

  • Provides and maintains public benches.

  • Provides litter bins and dog waste bins, which are then serviced by the District Council.

  • Considers and gives comments on all planning applications in the parish (the final decision on applications is taken by South Somerset District Council).

  • Liaises with South Somerset District Council, Somerset County Council, Somerset Highways and Avon and Somerset Constabulary on matters of concern relating to the parish such as litter, yellow lines, speeding traffic, highway improvements and maintenance, hedges and trees, footpaths and rights of way.

  • Provides two notice boards, one in Yenston and one in Henstridge.

  • Provides a board showing local footpaths in Henstridge.

  • Provides a quarterly newsletter via local establishments, the notice boards, website and e-mail (please let us know if you would like to be added to our mailing list!).

  • Has a footpaths officer who is able to carry out simple maintenance and liaise with the County Council for more major issues.

  • Provides representatives to other local bodies such as the Governing Body of the School, HALT and the Village Hall Management Committee.

However, we are always open to suggestions of other areas that you would like us to become involved with!

 

 

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