The Parish Council
Parish councils are the first tier of local government in England and Wales and are closest to the people. They serve the smallest area and are responsible for the most local of matters. In England they are called parish councils or town councils if they cover a largely urban area. They are elected units of local government whose activities are controlled by Acts of Parliament.
Parish, town and community councils have a number of basic responsibilities, including: representing the whole electorate within the parish; delivering services to meet local needs; and striving to improve quality of life in the parish. They can be responsible for providing a range of community services e.g. local transport and traffic, rights of way, recreation grounds and facilities, planning, seating and shelters, allotments and many others. Many county and district councils and unitary authorities are also responsible for providing and maintaining some of these services. Residents, however, may prefer to contact their parish council in regards to such local matters because of their smaller, less intimidating size and because they may be more in touch with their communitys needs. The parish council must be notified of any planning application or highway development planned for the area if they so wish. On some occasions the councils approval is also needed for any work to go ahead.
Parish councillors are elected by the public and serve four-year terms. Following elections, councils appoint a chair, or town mayor in town councils. To be a parish councillor requires time and commitment. A councillor will usually spend a couple of hours a week on parish business.
Parish councillors were unpaid positions until 2004 when allowance schemes were introduced to encourage more people to stand. Allowances are still, however, at the discretion of the individual councils. Playford parish councilors are all unpaid.
Parish council meetings are held bi-monthly in January, March, May, July, September and November, usually on the 1st Wednesday of the month at 7 pm in Playford Village Hall. All meetings are open to the public. At the beginning of each meeting an open forum is held where members of the public can put their questions to the council.
Code of Conduct and other documents
A copy of the local code of conduct for councillors is available here. You can also download the financial regulations and standing orders.
Register of interests
The councillors' register of interests is available to view on Suffolk Coastal District Council's web site.
The Parish Council's planning procedure is here.
Parish Council Transparency
Parish councils are now required to publish the following documents:
Dates of 2018 Parish Council Meetings
Weds 10th January
All start at 7:00 pm except where indicated
Meet your councillors