Parish Council Elections
On Thursday May 4th 2023, all 15 parish council seats will be up for election. These elections are managed by South Oxfordshire District Council (SODC). Information about local elections are available from their website. Please read on for details about becoming a parish councillor:
Being a parish councillor
Being a parish councillor is a rewarding role, where you can make a positive impact to your community, develop your own skills and ensure that the council delivers it’s statutory functions. To find out more Oxfordshire Association of Local Council’s have organised some free, online sessions:
You may also like to watch the ‘Make a Change, become a councillor‘ videos available through National Association of Local Council’s (NALC) YouTube channel.
Recent National Association of Local Councils (NALC) research found that councillors put aside, on average, three hours per week for council work, this can be greater for more epxerienced councillors, or those with additional responsibilities. This often included attending meetings, engaging with residents and speaking on behalf of the council to other bodies.
Training is available to all councillors, covering the basics, through to specific topics. The majority of this is paid for by the parish council.
If you have any further queries, you may find the answers in the following documents, or please approach any of the current parish councillors, or speak to the Clerk/Assistant Clerk.
Eligibility for Parish Council criteria
Candidates must be qualified to stand for election or co-option. The Local Government Act 1972, Section 79, sets out the qualifications for standing as a candidate and the grounds for disqualification of a candidate.
On the day of nomination or co-option and the day of poll (where applicable), you must:
- be at least 18 years old
- be a British citizen, an eligible Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of any other member state of the European Union, and
- meet at least one of the following four qualifications:
- Your name must appear on the register of local government electors for the parish/community at the time of your nomination and throughout your term of office should you be elected.
- You have occupied any land or other premises as owner or tenant in the parish/community during 12 months before the day of your nomination and the day of election.
- Your main or only place of work during the 12 months prior to the day of your nomination and the day of election has been in the parish/community area. You do not have to have paid employment to qualify, as long as your main or only place of work is in the parish/community area. For example, Councillors who’s main or only job is being a councillor would be able to use this qualification, if their council office is within the parish/community.
- You have lived in the parish/community area or within three miles of it during 12 months before the day of your nomination/co-option and the day of the election/co-option.
You may be disqualified as a candidate if:
- You are employed by the parish/community council or hold a paid office under the parish/community council (including joint boards or committees).
- You have been declared bankrupt in the last five years and have not repaid your debts.
- You have been convicted of a criminal offence and sentenced to at least three months imprisonment (including any suspended sentence) within the previous five years.
- You are disqualified due to corrupt practices under the Representation of the People Act 1983 or the Audit Commission Act.
For more information relating to these qualifications, please see the Electoral Commission’s Guidance.
There are many documents and publications that may help you in your decision below are two of the most popular: