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0 votes
Six residents requested that a Parish Meeting be held by the PC. A notice of this request with time, date, place, signatures and electoral role confirmation was put up on the village notice board 11 days before the meeting. The PC did not respond and were indeed obstructive refusing to put the Agenda on the village website, agenda was displayed 4 clear days before the meeting on the village notice board.. Two councillors attended with one saying that councillors were not to answer any questions on PC business, were there as residents only and that the meeting was illegal since the agenda had not been issued 7 days in advance. This is not how I read the guidance on various websites. Knowledgeable advice would be much appreciated. We went ahead with a meeting of parish residents.
by (270 points)

3 Answers

0 votes
Firstly let me apologise for using aphorisms but if the cap fits !

They say “ you  can take a donkey to water but you can’t make it drink “ this is the situation you describe as do you seriously believe you would have got a different response whether the meeting was “ legal “ or not

Parish / Town Councils are laws unto themselves no one can force them to obey their own rules or for that matter laws introduced by Parliament
I am currently have a perfect example of this but I won’t publish it here as I’m stalked on the Internet
There’s no point standing on the sidelines trying to force them to play you’ve got to get on the pitch yourself by being elected
by (11.6k points)
+1 vote

Schedule 12 of the Local Government Act 1972 specifies that a public notice stating the date, time, location and business to be transacted at a parish meeting  should be displayed 7 clear days before the meeting.  There are circumstances where longer notice is required.

by (10.1k points)
In other words the meeting was legal since the public notice was displayed 11 days prior to the meeting and the agenda 4 clear days. Thank you for your response.
No.  The business to be transacted (ie. the agenda) also required to be displayed 7 clear days before the meeting.
Perhaps the ambiguity between a public notice and an  agenda needs clarification.
0 votes
John has answered the question, but I get so frustrated with these councils and their adversarial attitude to the residents. As a clerk, if that happened in one of my parishes, I would contact the petitioners and discuss the notice requirements with them, encourage them to delay the meeting to be fully compliant, then advise the councillors to attend. It's unacceptable for an elected representative to be a councillor in the pub with their mates then pretend to be an ordinary resident in an official meeting.
by (53.3k points)
I agree but whether you like it or not, a parish council is not obliged to take heed of any resolution of a parish meeting.  Difficult to comment further without more information on what the parish meeting objectives were.   Simple point is you can't force an unresponsive parish council to do anything unless the move for action comes from within.
Thank you . , Are you available to add our parish to the existing ones that you clerk for? If not, pity!
Recently our parish council has advertised at least two 'open' meetings about community issues without agendas, publishing only notices that are not signed or dated by anyone. The Clerk has ignored requests to explain why they have published these unsigned notices on the village boards and on the parish council website without accompanying agendas.
It's OK to have a public meeting alongside the more formal processes. I've used this as a way of explaining to residents the processes by which the district council was developing a new Local Plan, to discuss the concept of a community-owned shop, and will be doing the same shortly to discuss ideas for Jubilee celebrations next year.

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