The Parish Council is made up of thirteen Councillors, and Withyham Parish Council currently has 3 Councillor vacancies, 2 in Groombridge Ward and 1 in Marden’s Hill Ward.
There are many reasons why people decide to become a local councillor. They might include:
- wanting to make a difference and be involved in shaping the future of the local community
- being concerned about your local area and wanting to ensure that the community gets the right services
- wanting to represent the views of local people and ensure that community interests are taken into account
- wanting to contribute your skills and knowledge
Withyham Parish Council can make a difference on all these issues and many more, and so can you as a councillor.
To stand for election to become a parish councillor you must be:
- At least 18 years old on the day of your nomination, and
- A British citizen, an eligible Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of any other member state of the European Union
You must also meet at least one of the following four qualifications:
- You are, and will continue to be, registered as a local government elector for the parish in which you wish to stand from the day of your nomination onwards, or
- You have occupied as owner or tenant any land or other premises in the parish area during the whole of the 12 months before the day of your nomination and the day of election, or
- Your main or only place of work during the 12 months prior to the day of your nomination and the day of election has been in the parish area, or
- You have lived in the parish area of within three miles of it during the whole of the 12 months before the day of your nomination and the day of election
There are certain people who are disqualified:
- You are employed by the parish council or hold a paid office under the parish/community council (including joint boards or committees)
- You are the subject of a bankruptcy restrictions order or interim order
- You have been sentenced to a term of imprisonment of three months or more (including a suspended sentence), without the option of a fine, during the five years before polling day
- You have been disqualified under the Representation of the People Act 1983 (which covers corrupt or illegal electoral practices and offences relating to donations) or under the Audit Commission Act 1998
Time allowing, we suggest that prospective councillors come to meetings to observe, and join in with our Withyham Parish Volunteers if they are able, in order to get a better understanding of the Council and councillors’ roles.