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Addington Parish Council needs you

Silhouette of people around a table with speech bubbles above

Are you passionate about your community? Do you want to help make a long-lasting change? Do you have innovative ideas for the Parish Council?

Why would I want to get involved?

We need youDo you have concerns about a specific issue and want to do something about it? If this is you, then we need you. We need people from all backgrounds and experiences who reflect their community to put themselves forward for election. There are many different reasons why people decide to become a local councillor. They include:

  • wishing to make a difference and be involved in shaping the future of the local community
  • being concerned about the local area and wanting to ensure that the community gets the right services
  • wishing to represent the views of local people and ensure that community interests are taken into account
  • wishing to pursue political beliefs
  • wishing to contribute individual business or professional skills
  • wishing an extension of what you are already doing through a political party, trade union, charity, voluntary group or school governing body

What is a Parish Council?

A Parish Council is a local authority that makes decisions on behalf of the people in the town. It is the level of government closest to the community. Addington Parish Council is often the first-place parishioners will go with concerns or ideas. For this reason, we are a vital part of the community and we want to encourage you to engage with us.

Elected Representatives

Addington Parish Council has 7 elected representatives who are democratically elected local representatives. They have a unique and privileged position and the potential to make a real difference to people’s lives. Once elected, Councillors sit on the council for a maximum of four years.  If Councillors wish to stay in post they can stand for re-election.

Why now?

This is such an exciting time to become a Parish Councillor.  In recognition of the need for a vibrant local democracy, the Localism Act 2011 sought to decentralise administrative power from the state towards localities, empowering communities to enable them to make better responses to community problems, and over the course of the past few years Parish Councils have found themselves taking on many more responsibilities.

Addington Green with Old School April 2009

Addington Parish Council has taken a number of projects including providing new play areas, litter bins and bus shelters and continually seeks to be actively involved in the delivery of many other local services. As we move forward, the public and the Councillors who represent them have an opportunity to engage with key stakeholders in a bottom-up approach to devolution with local solutions to local problems.

Addington playground

You can become a Councillor as long as you are:

  • British or a citizen of the Commonwealth or European Union
  • At least 18 years old
  • Registered to vote in the area or have lived, worked or owned property there for at least 12 months before an election.

Becoming a Parish Councillor is a great way to represent and make positive changes to your local community. You can either stand as an independent, or as a representative of a political party. If you want to represent a party, you will first need to join one and ask them to select you as their candidate for your area. In order to stand as a candidate at parish elections you must meet certain qualifications.

Help is on hand!

Don’t worry if you don’t yet feel that you have the skills or confidence to be a Councillor, the Parish Council and the Local Government Association (LGA) provides support, information and training for new Councillors and ongoing support for Councillors of all levels.

Next steps:

If you have read this far it is certainly time to find out more! The best way to find out what it’s like to be a Councillor is to talk to someone who’s doing it now; come along to a Parish Council meeting, speak to one of our Councillors or contact the Parish Clerk.

We currently have two vacancies and would be happy to meet with you to discuss the role further.

Other ways to get involved: All of our meetings are open to the public and there is an opportunity at each for members of the public to raise concerns and ask questions. There is also an Annual Parish Meeting in April each year which all parishioners are invited to attend; this is an open forum meeting and much less formal than our usual monthly committee meetings.