Deopham & Hackford Parish Council
The Parish Council is made up of 7 people who live in either Deopham or Hackford. The Parish Council meets on the first Wednesday of every month, apart from January & August, at 7.30pm in the Gralix Hall.
If you wish to speak to a Parish Councillor please contact the Clerk in the first instance.
Parish Clerk & Responsible Financial Officer
14 Gatekeeper Close, Wymondham, NR18 0XY
Deopham & Hackford Parish Councillors
Jackie Phoenix (Chair) | Deopham (elected 4/5/2023)
Chris Biggs (Vice Chair) | Deopham (elected 4/5/2023)
Martin Skidmore | Hackford (elected 4/5/2023)
Chris Coath | Deopham (elected 4/5/2023)
Catherine Grand | Deopham (elected 4/5/2023)
Eliska Cheeseman | Deopham (Co-opted 7/6/2023)
Chris Chorley | Deopham (elected 4/5/2023)
Details of Councillors Register of Interests can be viewed via the South Norfolk Council website.
South Norfolk Council - District Councillor, Hingham & Deopham Ward
Norfolk County Council - County Councillor, Hingham Division
The Role of a Councillor
A councillor is a member of the council and is normally elected for a term of four years. People of any political or religious persuasion are eligible to become a councillor, although their personal views should not extend into their parish council work. A councillor is an unpaid voluntary role. All Councillors must comply with the Council's adopted Code of Conduct as well as follow all council policies and procedures.
They are elected to represent the interests of the local community as a whole and promote a harmonious local environment. The number of elected councillors depends on the size of the area. In Deopham & Hackford we are able to have 7 councillors. Individual Parish Councillors cannot make decisions on behalf of the Council and have no powers outside of the Council meeting. They are encouraged to be active in the local community and engage with local projects, groups and residents so that they can represent their views in parish council meetings.
Local councils are the first tier of governance and are the first point of contact for anyone concerned with a community issue. They are democratically elected local authorities and exist in England, Wales and Scotland. The term ‘local council’ is synonymous with ‘parish council’, ‘town council’ and ‘community council’.
The Role of the Clerk
The Clerk is the ‘Proper Officer’ of the Council who is responsible for the smooth running of the Council’s business. They are the first point of contact for the Council and all correspondence comes to the Clerk.
Responsibility for implementing the decisions of the Council rests with the Clerk along with giving professional guidance where necessary whilst remaining neutral and discrete. The Clerk is also responsible for financial management as the Council's Responsible Financial Officer (RFO). As RFO the Clerk will prepare and monitor budgets, keep up to date accounts and complete the end of year audit, manage VAT, maintain the asset register and ensure the Council has adequate insurance.
The Clerk prepares, circulates and publishes agendas. The Clerk is required to attend meetings, take minutes, keep the Council minute book and hold other documents. The Clerk will also respond to correspondence, oversee major projects, apply for grants, ensure Council assets are maintained, manage the Council's communications including social media and the Council's website, monitor and implement policies and attend training to ensure the Council is kept up to date on government legislation and best practice.
The Role of the Council
Parish Council's are the first tier of local government. They work closely with the district and county councils. Some of the responsibilities of Deopham & Hackford Parish Council include (but is not restricted to):
- Be a consultee on local planning applications. The Council has no powers to make decisions on applications but will represent the views of the local community and submit comments.
- Be responsible for running and maintaining Deopham Playing Field, including the Pavilion and play park.
- Be responsible for providing and maintaining Council assets such as dog bins, noticeboards, benches and the village sign.
- Report highways defects to Norfolk County Council for repair.
- Represent residents views on matters that are important to them and work with and seek to influence other organisations to find appropriate solutions.
- Strive to improve the quality of life and the environment for the residents of the parish.
The responsibilities of a parish council will vary depending on each individual parish. Other examples of responsibilities which parish councils may have (but are not currently part of Deopham & Hackford's remit)
- Providing allotments.
- Maintaining war memorials and clock towers.
- Providing or running community buildings such as village halls.
- Running a community car scheme.
The powers a parish council has are laid out in legislation, and as such if the Council is not able to assist with an issue raised by a resident you will be directed to the right organisation.