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Becoming a parish councillor

By becoming a parish councillor you become someone your community will look to for help, guidance and support – a community leader with the power to influence decisions for the benefit of the people you serve.

Seeing your community change for the better, as a result of decisions you have helped make, is something that can give you a sense of achievement and pride.

For further details, please contact your parish clerk or the Electoral Services Team.


Training

We offer training for parish and town councils. Contact the Deputy Monitoring Officer for more details of the training programme.

Training is also provided by the Leicestershire and Rutland Association Local Councils, who represent the vast majority of parish and town councils in Leicestershire.


Eligibility

To stand for election on a parish council, you must:

  • be a UK or Commonwealth citizen
  • be a citizen of the Republic of Ireland
  • be a citizen of another Member state of the European Union
  • be at least 18 years old

To be eligible to stand for an election for a particular parish, you must:

  • be an elector of the parish
  • for the whole of the previous 12 months have occupied (as owner or tenant) land or other premises in the parish
  • during the previous 12 months have worked in the parish (as your principal or only place of work)
  • for the whole of the previous 12 months lived in the parish or within three miles of the parish boundary

If you do become a parish councillor you will have to sign up to the Parish Council's Code of Conduct.


Meetings

Councils usually meet once a month for the council meeting, to which members of the public are also invited. Meetings may last two or three hours, depending on what’s on the list of items to discuss. Some councils may also have sub-committees to deal with specific subjects, such as planning matters.


Length of service

Once elected, parish councillors sit on the council for a maximum of four years. If they then want to stay in the post they can stand for re-election.

It doesn’t mean that you have to stay for four years, if you find it’s not for you or you can no longer meet the commitment you can stand down.


Don’t take our word for it

The best way to find out what it’s like to be a parish councillor is to talk to someone who’s doing it now. Go along to a parish council meeting, speak to one of the councillors and find out what they think of the job.

For contact details and information on the work of many parish councils visit the Leicestershire parish councils website and click on the name of the parish you are interested in.

Alternatively contact Electoral Services and request this information.

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