What is a Parish Council?
Parish councils were established in 1894 to take on the duties formally administered by churchwardens and overseers of the poor. They are the first tier of local government and deal with village community matters. A civil parish is an independent local authority for villages, smaller towns, and suburbs of urban areas. Councils are funded principally by an annual precept. The precept is collected through a council tax by the principal authority, i.e. Cheshire East Council and is paid to the Parish Council in two six-monthly installments. Parish councils are run by Councillors, who volunteer their time, and their work falls into three main categories:
- Representing the local community
- Delivering services to meet local needs
- Striving to improve the quality of life in the parish
What do they do?
Parish councils have a wide range of powers given to them through legislation. They have tax-raising powers, known as the precept; they consider and comment on all planning applications concerning Disley & Newtown and make recommendations to the planning team at Cheshire East Council but do not have the power to approve or refuse them; they can have an input into village crime prevention; they can make bye-laws in specific areas; they can provide amenities and facilities such as village halls, parks, playing fields, allotments and bus shelters. You can download a full list of Parish Council powers HERE.
How much is the Disley Parish Council precept and what is it spent on?
The Precept for the year 2018/19 was set at £148,927 which equates to £74.40 per year for a Band D property. This represented a zero increase on the previous year. The money is routinely spent on the maintenance of all Parish owned land and assets such as the Community Centre, play areas and allotments. Since April 2012, the Parish Council has also been responsible for the provision of hanging baskets and the Christmas Tree Lighting event following the transfer of these non-statutory services from Cheshire East Council. The Parish Council also runs a successful Community Bus Scheme, organises other village events and produces and distributes a regular newsletter. The Council also supports local village organisations through a Community Grant Scheme and employs five members of staff. Parish councillors are not paid for the work they do.
Who runs the Parish Council?
Disley Parish Council is run by seven parish councillors from the village, elected every four years, who appoint a chairman as the leader. The Parish Clerk, who receives remuneration, is an employee if the Council and is non-political. The clerk is responsible for the organisation of the council including dealing with correspondence, financial matters, preparing the agenda for meetings and personnel.
How does the Council do its business?
The council meets at Disley Community Centre at 7.30pm on the second Wednesday of every month. Agendas and for all meetings are posted on village notice boards and agenda and minutes are on the website HERE.
Can the public attend meetings?
Yes. You are very welcome to sit in on the meetings. In fact we encourage you to attend so that you are fully informed about what is happening to your village. Your role is to observe only but a designated part of the agenda, the Public Forum, allows you to express your views and make comments on any of the items on the agenda or any subject that falls within the Parish Council’s remit. It is advisable to let the Clerk know in advance if you wish to speak or ask questions on a specific topic or agenda item.
How can we find out more about what the Parish Council does?
Attend the meetings and see how the council works. Take time to view the agendas and other information on this website or noticeboards. Read the minutes, which are available once approved, from the Parish Clerk or on this website. Do please ask us for information or download it yourself from our website.