Becoming a Town Councillor for Skegness
Skegness Town Council is a medium to large sized parish covering Skegness & Winthorpe. The Council currently employees 18 people with an expected expenditure of around £750,000 in the next financial year. The Council serves a population of around 22,000 people and has 21 Councillors including a Mayor and Deputy Mayor. Would you like to represent your community? Are you interested in the issues that Skegness & Winthorpe face? Do you want to be involved in shaping the future of the local community? If the answer is Yes, then becoming a Councillor could be right for you.
A list of the Councils' Current duties:
- Management of Tower Gardens Pavilion, Gardens and play area, St Marys Cemetery, Remembrance Garden, Allotments, Alma Avenue Play Area, Winthorpe Play Area, Scarbrough Avenue Car Park, Christmas Illuminations and some of the benches, notice boards and bus shelters in the town
- Review and comment on planning applications within the Town
- Liaise with relevant authorities regarding infrastructure /policing/community issues to represent your views and get the best advantage for the local area
- Engage with all interested parties regarding current and future shape of life in the local area
- Amenity grass cutting in Skegness and maintenance of some parish paths
- Hanging Baskets and Planters (Town Centre and Castleton Boulevard only)
- War Memorial maintenance
- Neighbourhood Development Plan
- Charity Street Collection Licensing
- Remembrance Parade organisation (in conjunction with other organisations)
- Mayoral and Jolly Fisherman support for events
- Provision of Christmas Illuminations
To find out more about what the Council gets up to see the website, read the annual report and come to a meeting.
Are you qualified to be a Councillor?
A Councillor is a person elected (whether his election is contested or not) or co-opted into a Council and is the holder of a public office.
To be able to stand as a candidate at a parish council election you must:
- be at least 18 years old
- be a British citizen, an eligible Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of any member state of the European Union
- You must also meet at least one of the following four qualifications:
- a. You are, and will continue to be, registered as a local government elector for the parish in which you wish to stand from the day of your nomination onwards
- b. You have occupied as owner or tenant any land or other premises in the parish area during the whole of the 12 months before the day of your nomination and the day of election.
- c. 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 area.
- d. You have lived in the parish area or within three miles of it during the whole of the 12 months before the day of your nomination and the day of election,
There are certain people who are disqualified from being a Town Councillor. You cannot be a candidate if at the time of your nomination and on polling day you are employed by Skegness Town Council, are subject of a bankruptcy restrictions order or interim order, have been sentenced to a term of imprisonment of three months or more (including a suspended sentence), or have been disqualified under the Representation of the People Act 1983 or are subject to the notification requirement of or under Part 2 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003, and the ordinary period allowed for making an appeal or application in respect of the order or notification has passed. If you are unsure on whether you qualify, please contact Skegness Town Council office or the Elections Team at East Lindsey District Council to discuss.
Further information on standing for election in a Town or Parish Council can be found from the Electoral Commissions website Part 1 Can you stand for election P and C (electoralcommission.org.uk).
A Councillor must make a declaration of acceptance of office in a prescribed form and must abide by the Councils' Code of Conduct.
The main responsibilities of a Councillor are:
- To represent their ward
- A duty to attend meetings - expect to attend up to 36 meetings per year
- To attend training
- To raise matters for the Council to consider and decide upon
- To make informed contributions which influence debate
- Be familiar with and follow Standing Orders (the rules of the Council)
- To abide with the Code of Conduct
- Duty to disclose and register financial interests and that of Spouse/Partner
- Community leadership & Engagement
Council meetings are held monthly on top of this there are Committee meetings and working group meetings, these can be evening and sometimes daytime meetings, you should expect to spend around 12-20 hours a month on Council activities. A Councillors normal term of office is four years. Skegness Town Council will be holding face to face workshops on becoming a Councillor at 6pm on Wednesday 25th January 2023 and 6pm Wednesday 8th February 2023 at Tower Gardens Pavilion, Skegness. A virtual workshop will also take place via Zoom on 2pm on Wednesday 8th February 2023, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to request the meeting link.
Will I get paid?
Working as a Councillor is a voluntary role. However, Skegness Town Council has opted to use its' power to pay an allowance to elected Councillors, this is currently £500 per year, this is to cover expenses like internet provision, printing and posting.
Will I be able to change anything?
Skegness Town Council must work within its powers and duties. A Council cannot do anything unless permitted by legislation. In general, a Parish or Town Council can make decisions on the land and assets it owns and the services it provides. A list of powers and duties can be found at the back of the good councillor guide. For example, at the moment, you would not have the power to make decisions to fix all the potholes in Skegness as this is the responsibility of Lincolnshire County Council.
"Be realistic in what you think you can achieve" comment from current Town Councillor.
How can I find out more?
- Visit the Electoral Commissions website and read the guidance for candidates.
- Visit the Town Councils' website, subscribe to the newsletter and follow us on social media
- Come to a meeting or attend one of the "Becoming a Councillor Workshops"
- Read the Good Councillors Guide
- Talk to other Town Councillors or the Town Clerk
- Visit the National Association of Councils website Elections — #MakeAChange (nalc.gov.uk)
Check if you are eligible and then contact the ELDC elections officer on 01507 601111 for a nomination pack. These will be available nearer the date of the elections, approximately February 2023.
Guide, Good Councillor, 2017.04.25 (PDF, 927 Kb)
A useful guide for new Councillors explaining the rules and procedures for Local Councils
Guide, It takes all sorts, 2016.06.21 (PDF, 5.2 Mb)
A publication from the National Association of Local Councils explaining the role of a Parish Councillor
National Association of Local Councils guide - 'All About Local Councils'