The Parish Council

A Parish Council is the most locally elected body within the English system of local government.  Most  were formed by the Local Government Act in 1894 and they look after the interests of those who live within the parish. They have a wide range of powers at their disposal including giving grants to local organisations, promoting tourism, cleaning public places and providing recreational areas  such as playing fields and village halls.  The most important role is as a statutory consultee on planning matters. The Local Planning Authority has to consult the Council on all Planning Applications within the Parish boundary.

More information on local councils in England, the role of local councillors and what you need to do if you would like to stand as a candidate in local parish or town council elections is available in the Booklets and Resources section on the National Association of Local Councils web site.

Chelmondiston Parish Council is the first tier of a three tier system of local government, with Babergh District Council, (in this area) and Suffolk County Council being the next two tiers, all elected by people within the region. 
Our Babergh District Councillors for Berners Ward, are Derek Davis of Shotley Gate and Peter Patrick of Polstead and their contact details can be found here.
Our Suffolk Councillor is David Wood and his contact details can be found here.

Chelmondiston Parish Council has eleven members elected every four years, the most recent election was held on the 7th May 2015, also the day of the General Election.  Being a Parish Councillor is a voluntary position; they receive no payment but they are entitled to receive allowances when they carry out certain "approved duties" outside of the Parish. 

The Council employs a part time Clerk, also the Responsible Finance Officer, who has responsibility for managing the meetings, dealing with correspondence and over seeing any contracts or purchasing.

The Council has a set of rules called Standing Orders by which the Council, its elected Members and its Officers conduct their activities. The Standing Orders and the Code of Conduct documents are available here under Documents and Policies along with information about Register of Interests.

They deliver a range of services at a community level and their role is to represent the local community, provide services to meet local needs and improve quality of life and community well being.

If you wish to know more about the role of a Parish Councillor click HERE for a copy of The Good Councillors Guide. Go to the Members page for information on vacancies.

Parish Clerk: Fran Sewell, Houseboat Pandora, Pin Mill, Chelmondiston, Ipswich IP9 1JW
Tel: 01473 780 138   e-mail:


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