Parish Council Newsletter – Feb 2022

Marnhull Parish Council

What is its purpose?

Many people’s concept of a Parish Council is a group of older people meeting in a draughty hall every now and again rather like the Vicar of Dibley. “No, no, no. Yes!”

So what is Marnhull Parish Council really about?

Marnhull Parish Council is at its heart a group of (admittedly older) residents working to support and enhance village life and to safeguard the heritage and well-being of our unique village, its amenities, and its community. To achieve this, we need to engage in open dialogue with you, the residents to understand your concerns, needs and aspirations so we can get things done in a meaningful way that is best suited to the community and delivers value for money.

We are a statutory local authority established under the Local Governments Act 1972. We are financed through the precept, an amount of money calculated as an estimate for the coming financial year and collected as part of your Council Tax. This money is used to improve facilities and services for local people. Consequently we actively encourage input from Marnhull residents on what the community needs, so that we can budget for that activity. We are also very keen to encourage residents to attend our monthly Parish Council meetings and we are ultimately directly accountable to you, Marnhull’s residents.

What services do we provide?

Through an extensive range of discretionary powers Marnhull Parish Council provides and maintains a wide variety of important and visible local services including the village allotments, cemetery, the car park in Burton Street, the Recreation Ground with the children’s playground and its leisure and sports facilities, litter bins, and traffic calming measures, such as the current SIDs project.

How do we participate in the planning process?

Another important role the Parish Council has is as a statutory consultee in the planning process. During the last two years the UK has seen a seismic shift in working practices and a desire from many people to relocate to the countryside and this in turn has encouraged landowners and developers to submit planning applications some of which are speculative or significantly impactful on the Village. The Parish Council is very active as a consultee on planning matters and acutely aware of the need to balance the needs of our residents (for example for affordable housing) with preserving the character of our village by avoiding large out of character developments. Although we have no powers to approve or reject planning applications, we endeavour to provide constructive feedback based upon material planning considerations and the input we get from the residents. When necessary we also work with external experts to help us frame our responses. Again we are very keen to canvass widely for residents views on specific planning applications so that we can most accurately present the views of our community.

How do we work with others?

At a local level the Parish Council actively seeks to work with community organisations to help towards the wellbeing of our residents. We are particularly keen on supporting sustainability and have grant funding available to assist local organisations with projects that benefit the wider community and enhance village life.

We also work closely with Dorset Council, the unitary authority, and our local councillor, Graham Carr-Jones. Dorset Council has primary responsibility for many services such as highways (drainage, flooding, footpaths and bridleways, potholes etc), refuse collection, and planning that are particularly relevant to Marnhull residents. More information is readily available on www.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk and the Parish Council is also happy to assist residents in contacting the right agencies to address issues in the village.

Contact details

To contact the Marnhull Parish Council please use the following:

Clerk: Sally Upshall
6 New Street
Marnhull
Dorset
DT10 1PY

Phone number: (01258) 821231
Email address: clerk@marnhull-pc.org.uk
Website: https://marnhull-pc.org.uk

A call to arms

We need your support to support you. We have vacancies for parish councillors and would love to recruit younger residents to join us who can promote the views of the families and younger people who are the future of our village and are vital to maintaining our community into the future. If you can spare some time to join us, please contact Sally Upshall. Otherwise please contribute by attending the occasional parish council meeting and sharing your views. We are accountable to you.