The Parish Council is the first level of local government. Its function is to represent the parish, provide certain services (such as maintaining the closed churchyard), and to make sure that the upper levels of local government (the District and County Councils) give the service expected of them.
The Parish Council has specific, but limited, duties relating to planning applications. It does not decide planning applications, but does make the planning authority (the District Council in the first instance) aware of local views and wishes. Members of the parish are encouraged to make their views known when they see planning application notices posted in the village, and are advised to contact the clerk in the first instance.
The Parish Council meets 4 times a year in the village hall – normally at 7.30 p.m.: the mandatory Annual Meeting is held in May, and follows on immediately after the separate Annual Meeting of the parish. Notices of meetings are posted on the village notice board and on this website, and members of the public are welcome to attend and are permitted to raise any matters relevant to the parish. Members of the public do not formally join in discussions on agenda items, but the chairman is always ready to allow those wishing to contribute to do so.
The Parish Council is funded from the parish precept, agreed at the beginning of each year and forming one element of the Council Tax. Parish councillors are elected for a period of 4 years. Advice is available on both the SSDC and SALC websites for anyone interested in serving on the Council: should vacancies occur the Parish Council can co-opt volunteers, so please contact the Clerk if you are interested. The Parish Council works closely with the two Blackmoor Vale ward members of the District Council who regularly attend Parish Council meetings: their names along with those of the current Parish Councillors are listed on this website.
Do please let the Parish Council know about anything to do with the village that concerns you: if they can do nothing about it they probably know who can.