What is a Parish Council?
Cornforth Parish Council is a type of local authority found in England which is the lowest, or first, tier of local government. They are elected bodies and have variable tax raising powers. Parish councils are responsible for areas known as civil parishes.
Parish councils have the power to precept (tax) their residents to support their operations and to carry out local projects. Although there is no limit to the amount that can be precepted, the money can only be raised for a limited number of purposes, defined in the 1894 Act and subsequent legislation.
Parish councils have powers to provide some facilities themselves, or they can contribute towards their provision by others. There are large variations in the services provided by parishes, but they can include the following:
- Support and encouragement of arts and crafts
- Provision of village halls
- Recreation grounds, parks, children’s play areas, playing fields and swimming baths
- Cemeteries and crematoria
- Maintenance of closed churchyards
- Cleaning and drainage of ponds etc.
- Control of litter
- Public conveniences
- Creation and maintenance of footpaths and bridleways
- Provision of cycle and motorcycle parking
- Acquisition and maintenance of rights of way
- Public clocks
- War memorials
- Encouragement of tourism
They may also provide the following subject to the consent of the county council or unitary authority of the area in which they lie:
- Bus shelters
- Signposting of footpaths
- Lighting of footpaths
- Off-street car parks
- Provision, maintenance and protection of roadside verges
Parish councils must be notified by the district or county council of:
- All planning applications in their areas
- Intention to provide a burial ground in the parish
- Proposals to carry out sewerage works
- Footpath and bridleway (more generally, ‘rights of way’) surveys
- Intention to make bye laws in relation to hackney carriages, music and dancing, promenades, sea shore and street naming