Friday, 29 May 2015

Annual Parish Meeting – your feedback welcome

At Tuesday night’s Parish Council meeting, the Chair and Clerk were forcefully criticised for changing the format of the Annual Parish Meeting from that followed by the previous Chair, making it more of a ‘social event’ rather than an opportunity for residents to raise their concerns. The Annual Parish Meeting belongs to the residents of Natland, however, and is, legally, nothing at all to do with the parish council (or what they have been doing over the past year, except inasmuch as the council is one of the groups in the parish, like the WI or the Brownies). Fortunately there is a lot more to Natland than the activities of the Parish Council!

However, it seems likely that I will, as Chair, be calling the meeting next year and I would very much like to hear how residents (at least those who read this website and the Parish News) would like their meeting to be conducted next time. If you feel full democratic participation in the meeting was stifled by not having a copy of the parish council’s annual report and accounts before the meeting, or not having an agenda published on the parish noticeboard, or by any other aspect of the event – or if, on the other hand, you would prefer next year’s meeting to be run along this year’s lines – I would like to hear from you (

As ever, I’m keen to hear any suggestions as to how to build up our local community and draw in anyone who feels that they are on the fringes (geographically or technologically).

Thank you,
Lois Sparling, Chair, Natland Parish Council