Empowering Parish and Town Councils in Northamptonshire

75th Annual Conference & AGM

The 75th Annual Conference took place on Saturday 1 October 2022 in Kettering. For our 75th Anniversary we wanted to push the boat out a little bit, and thanks to our generous sponsors and exhibitors we were able to make it a full day event, with lunch provided, in the wonderful setting of the Kettering Conference Centre. In attendance were one hundred and sixty-five delegates representing nearly one hundred parish and town councils.

Doors opened at 0915 for delegates to fuel up on hot breakfast rolls and drinks and to meet the exhibitors.

The formal business of the Annual General Meeting got underway at 1000 and the Chair, Mike Scott, went briskly through the agenda, with Jeffrey Greenwell re-appointed as President, Kate Brown Accountant re-appointed as auditor, and all eight existing directors re-appointed for another year. The minutes of the 74th AGM and the Annual report to 31 March 2022 were received and noted. An increase in membership fees for 2023/24 in line with inflation (CPIH July 2022 – 8.8%) was approved. The full minutes of the meeting are below.

The next session was awards and recognition, with the Chair calling for rounds of applause for the six clerks who have achieved their CiLCA qualification since last year, and the forty-six councillors who have accredited under the Councillor Development Framework (CDF). Mike also congratulated Irthlingborough Town Council for achieving "Quality" standard in the Local Council Award Scheme.

Danny Moody then read out the commendation for the Council of the Year, which was awarded to Moulton Parish Council. Danny said: "All great councils need three things: a great clerk, a great chair, and a great team of councillors. Moulton Parish Council has those ingredients in spades, with a small staff team that is led by a passionate, dedicated, and exceptional clerk." Danny added: "The parish council will be having a genuine impact on people's quality of life and health and wellbeing. Most importantly, the upstream money that this council is investing will be saving tens, maybe even hundreds, of times more than that further downstream. Just the services it provides that reduce loneliness and social isolation could be saving millions of pounds." The award was presented by Northants CALC President, Jeffrey Greenwell, to the chair of Moulton Parish Council, Cllr David Aarons, and vice chair, Cllr Geoff Paul.

Unfortunately, as Jeffery Greenwell returned to his seat, he miscalculated the step up to the stage and fell backwards landing on the floor to audience gasps and great concern from the top table. It was good to have three senior police officers in the room at the time who leapt in to assist! Jeffrey went off to hospital as a precaution, but I am pleased to report that after extensive checks he was able to return to the venue just as we were leaving to collect his car and drive home. He was very disappointed that he missed some of the 75th Anniversary celebrations, but we are all just so relieved that he was OK. Sincere thanks go to Cllr Donia Harker, a delegate from Roade Parish Council, who is a qualified Paramedic, and Marie Reilly and Mike Scott, who together ensured that Jeffery was well looked after before the ambulance arrived.

Danny Moody made a presentation on Northants CALC Past, Present, & Future looking back over the 75-year history of the Association and picking out the key moments along the way. He then looked at what the next five to ten years might bring for the parish and town council sector and what the Association needs to do to support member councils. At the end of the presentation, he formally launched The History of the Northamptonshire County Association of Local Councils and its predecessors between 1947 and 2012 (Updated 2022), (see copy) which had been specially updated for the 75th Anniversary by erstwhile director, Eric Franklin.

There was then a choice of sessions for delegates. In the main room Danny Moody facilitated a discussion on the cost-of-living crisis focusing on what councils can do directly to reduce their own costs (e.g., energy), what they can do to help residents to reduce their costs, and what they can do to support other agencies who are trying to help residents. Suggestions from the floor ranged from warm rooms to community larders, and from community solar schemes to debt management advice. Danny's introductory presentation and the notes of the session are below. In the breakout room Chief Inspector Nathan Murray spoke on Local Policing & Community Safety – Working in Partnership with Northamptonshire Police and highlighted that to match the geography of the unitary councils in the county, there is now the North and West Local Policing Area, along with a Countywide Community Safety Department. One focus of the force strategy is local policing, and this is partially being fuelled from the Locally Identified Priorities (LIP) surveys. During the questions, the need for communication streams to be centralised was raised – as well as issues relating to speeding and the relevance of Neighbourhood Watch to Northamptonshire Police.

Lunch was then served to all delegates and guests, with a choice of main course and dessert. During the break there was plenty of opportunity to meet the exhibitors and for delegates to network with colleagues from across the county. It being Northants CALC's 75th birthday, a cake had been arranged and, after a few words from Mike Scott, it was ceremoniously cut by Danny Moody for each delegate to have a piece. The cake-cutting was followed by a surprise award to Danny Moody for his fifteen years working for Northants CALC. He was given a glass engraved paperweight, a bottle, and some vouchers.

After the lunch break, delegates were split into two groups for a Question Time-style panel; one for West Northamptonshire and one for North Northamptonshire. The questions had been submitted by delegates in advance and in true Question Time tradition, the panellists did not know what the questions were until they were asked. Danny Moody chaired the panel for West Northamptonshire comprising Keith Stevens, Chair of the National Association of Local Councils (NALC), Anna Earnshaw, CEO of West Northamptonshire Council, and Assistant Chief Constable Ash Tuckley from Northamptonshire Police. The questions included the role of parish and town councils in health and wellbeing, rural transport, remote meetings, civility and respect, and parish-sponsored PCSOs. Mike Scott chaired the panel for North Northamptonshire comprising Jonathan Owen, CEO of NALC, David Watts, Executive Director at NNC, and Chief Superintendent Adam Ward from Northamptonshire Police. The questions ranged from considering how to get people involved in the community and that "there is no such thing as a hard-to-reach community, we just don't know what mechanism to use to reach them", to discussions around how traveller sites were policed and when static sites would be provided by NNC (David Watts confirmed that the Travellers Plan will be released soon). A point was raised regarding how councils can partner to support each other and how local bus services are practically non-existent in the rural areas of the county. All the panellists were thanked for taking part in what turned out to be lively and useful sessions.

Delegates then convened together in the main room for the plenary session, a keynote presentation by leading climate champion Ed Gemmell. Ed is a parish councillor and chairman of the Climate Emergency Working Party at Hazlemere Parish Council and is on NALC's climate emergency committee. He is also a Buckinghamshire Unitary Councillor sitting on the Transport Environment and Climate Change Committee and a member of the LGA's Environment, Economy, Housing and Transport Board. He works as Managing Director of Scientists Warning Europe and has just started a political party called The Climate Party. Ed gave an overview of the climate crisis and described the progress, or lack thereof, that had been made at COP26. He described some of the initiatives that Hazlemere Parish Council has implemented, including Bee Squared (wildflower planting), a Repair Café and advanced recycling, and a series of open talks on climate issues. The council aims to reach net zero by 2030 and has a range of plans in the pipeline, including Electric Vehicle Charging Points (EVCPs) and a food-waste reduction scheme. Lesley Sambrook Smith thanked Ed for his inspirational presentation and reminded delegates about the Northants CALC Climate Conference on 22 November 2022.

Chair, Mike Scott, then bought the conference back to order and asked Danny Moody to announce the winner of the prize draw. Ed Gemmell drew the winner out of the box and £300 in vouchers and a bottle of Prosecco, generously donated by Wicksteed Playgrounds, went to Watford Parish Council. It was presented by Jodie Midlane from Wicksteed Playgrounds to the Clerk to Watford Parish Council, Sue Porter, and Chair, Councillor Peter Incley.

Mike Scott thanked everyone that had taken part in the conference, especially the sponsors and exhibitors whose generous support enabled the event to take place at the Kettering Conference Centre. He also thanked the special guests, speakers, and panellists and the staff at Northants CALC for all the arrangements. In closing, Mike thanked all the delegates for their interaction and engagement with the sessions, which had made the event such a success.

The 76th Annual Conference will take place on Saturday 7 October 2023 at Moulton Community Centre. Put the date in your diary!

Photo Gallery

Click below for a gallery of photographs taken at the 75th Annual Conference. All photos by Peter Rondel Photography.

Papers & Presentations


74th Northants CALC Conference & AGM

The Northants CALC Annual Conference & AGM - "Unitary Northamptonshire - The First Six Months" - took place on 2 October 2021 at One Angel Square in Northampton by kind invitation of West Northamptonshire Council.

Over one hundred delegates from more than fifty member councils attended, as well as guests, exhibitors, and officers.

Delegates were treated to bacon or sausage baps on arrival and had an opportunity to network and meet the exhibitors before the formal business got underway.

Lesley Sambrook Smith, Deputy CEO of Northants CALC called the meeting to order at precisely 10:00 a.m. and handed over to Mike Scott, Chairman of Northants CALC who presided over the formal AGM business. The meeting elected Mr Jeffrey Greenwell as President, and agreed an increase in 2022/23 membership fees of 2.1% in line with inflation. The minutes of the 73rd AGM were approved for signature and the Annual report & Accounts for the year ending 31 March 2021 were received and noted.

The guest speakers were Cllr Jonathan Nunn, Leader of West Northamptonshire Council (Jonathan.Nunn@westnorthants.gov.uk), and Cllr David Howes, Portfolio Holder for Rural Communities and Localism at North Northamptonshire Council (David.Howes@northnorthants.gov.uk).

Cllr Jonathan Nunn, Leader of West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) addressed the conference. He said that parish and town councils were a big part of WNC's plans and that the WNC logo, which had been designed to represent the former principal councils, was now thought to represent the public, private, and voluntary sectors working together. As part of the public sector, it is vital that principal councils and parish and town councils have a culture of collaboration. Cllr Nunn said that culture was extremely important, and that it "needed to be in peoples' hearts, not just in their email footers". He said, "We are on a journey together, we are not there yet". He said that WNC's finances are in good shape and that a strategy has been published. A new Councillor Empowerment Fund is being launched and Cllr Nunn urged all parish and town councils to talk to their WNC ward members. He said he was aware of different levels of engagement between parishes and ward members and that a standard service level could be designed to set out the expectations. Cllr Nunn said that "Working together, we can create something very exciting".

Cllr David Howes, Portfolio Holder for Rural Communities and Localism at North Northamptonshire Council (NNC) addressed the conference. He noted the challenges that setting up the unitary council had thrown up but said that "business as usual" and "safe and legal" had been achieved, as well as doing some new things. Strategies are being set out and a new Corporate Plan is currently out for consultation. The boundaries of the four former local government districts are retained for the purposes of planning and development control, with a Local Area Planning Committee for each one, and planning is seen as a very important interface between the unitary council and residents. Cllr Howes said that parish and town councils are very important and that a list of contact details for senior officers had been circulated to them to ensure they knew who to speak to. He wanted to see parish and town councils treated as partners and noted that NNC's Chief Executive had reinforced that ethos at staff meetings. Cllr Howes referenced devolution and committed that nothing will be "done to" parish and town councils. He said, "You must feel part of the process – we want to be working with you and listening". Cllr Howes said, "We need to communicate better; we're not there yet" and he urged parish and town councils to help by sharing community intelligence via a new single point of contact for parish and town councils and asked for mutual understanding that there will be challenges ahead.

Mike Scott thanked the guest speakers for the presentations and invited questions from the audience, which ranged from how to set the right culture of the unitary councils, to the financial savings that they will achieve, and how it was important to bring all services up to the highest standard achieved by the former principal councils, not reduce levels to the lowest common denominator. Mike Scott thanked the audience for their questions and comments and the speakers again for their responses.

The conference then went to break for delicious cakes and cookies and hot drinks, and another chance to chat to fellow delegates and speak to exhibitors. At the end of the break a presentation of flowers and a gift was made to Catherine Lomax, one of the retiring vice presidents. Unfortunately, the other retirees, Gwen Radcliffe and Gordon Shorley, were unable to be at the conference, but will receive their presentations at home.

After the break conference heard from five member councils on their perspective of unitary Northamptonshire.

Deborah Rush, Clerk to Cogenhoe & Whiston Parish Council (in West Northamptonshire) and Grendon Parish Council (in North Northamptonshire), said that the ward councillors were trying to engage. Operationally there are frustrations and highways are taking longer to respond. The ERP Gold accounting system that WNC uses is frustrating, and it is more complex to invoice the unitary councils for the Village Hopper service than previously as the invoices now have to be broken down per journey and per stop. Local Government Reorganisation (LGR) has generated a lot of extra work for clerks. Neither council yet identifies as "west" or "north". Residents don't really understand LGR, or where they should now go to for help, so a residents' help desk is being set up during coffee mornings to provide a local signposting service. Deborah Rush said "We know our residents best. If you work with us, we can help".

Mark Hunter, Clerk to Chelveston-cum-Caldecott Parish Council (in North Northamptonshire), praised the engagement from NNC ward councillors. Operationally it was not going so well, as the NNC telephone system is tortuous, the SPOC details haven't yet been published, and the Registers of Members Interests forms had taken a long time to appear on the NNC web site. He asked for better comms and that the NNC Councillors' Briefing being circulated to parish and town councils. He noted that NNC wants to work with parish and town councils but cited the litter bins and fly tipping strategy document, which didn't mention parish and town councils at all. Cllr Graham Lawman has agreed to change that. Mark Hunter described the Lengthsman that had been employed in the parish and called upon NNC to be less risk-averse regarding such initiatives than Northamptonshire County Council had been. He said, "Please treat parish and town councils as serious partners".

Cllr Sam Kilby-Shaw, Chairman of Kingsthorpe Parish Council (in West Northamptonshire), said that being so new the council did not yet have a true sense of identity and that it was a large parish with a diverse demographic. He said that the KPC councillors were gaining experience, skills, and knowledge and have been working hard on initiatives, such as reopening Kingsthorpe library. He said there had been limited contact with the WNC ward members so far, but what contact there had been was good. There was also good contact with Jonathan Nunn and the local MP, Michael Ellis. Sam Kilby-Shaw said, "We can't judge collaboration yet, but if we work together, we can work through any problems".

Cllr Pat Scouse, Chairman of Broughton Parish Council (in North Northamptonshire), reported that engagement with the NNC ward councillors had been mixed. She said that Local Government Reorganisation (LGR) had been a big task but that we should not lose sight of the grass roots and that parish and town councils can play a vital role in providing local services. The network of parish and town councillors in the county is an underused resource that could be used to convey the unitary councils' messages to individual communities. Pat Scouse said that parish and town councils operate under the radar of the unitary councils and that a little thought would go a long way and that working collaboratively the tiers of local government could achieve a great deal. She cited climate change as an issue that parish and town councils could help embed in local action. She said, "We need to move beyond "them and us". Reach out to the knowledge represented here today. We can make Northamptonshire a clean, green, shining example".

Gary Youens, Clerk to Duston Parish Council (in West Northamptonshire), said that it was early days, but there was a determination all round to make unitary local government work and that unitary was a good model overall being more joined up and with less relational distraction than had existed previously. He said that the unitary councils must now concentrate on statutory strategic services, but that creates a large distance between the unitary councils and individual communities. Duston Parish Council has gone from being 1 of 10 councils in the borough of Northampton, to being 1 of 165 in West Northamptonshire. If they wish, parish and town councils can fill the void at community level. Gary Youens said that WNC ward councillors and parish and town councils need each other. He said that it was going to be hard for WNC to have an individual relationship with each parish and town council and called for some sort of Memorandum or Charter to be developed. He called for harmonisation of services across West Northamptonshire, citing the fact that WNC operates allotments in Duston, whereas in other areas that function is typically discharged by parish and town councils. Gary Youens said, "With the Borough Council now gone we are working with our neighbours more and meeting with them more regularly to discuss common issues. In due course we look forward to extending and building that relationship with other councils in West Northamptonshire."

Mike Scott thanked all the parish speakers and invited Cllrs Nunn and Howes to reply if they wished.

Cllr Nunn said that he had listened to what had been said and that he needed to reiterate to senior officers at WNC that parish and town councils are important. He took on board the ERP Gold issue. He said that it will take time to build the identity of "West Northamptonshire" because it is not a physical place on a map, but that in some respects in residents had not noticed any change then that was a measure of success because services had continued uninterrupted. He said that WNC's leadership was working incredibly hard and that sometimes response times were longer than desirable. Cllr Nunn said that a new standard for how ward councillors work with parish and town councils would be developed and that harmonisation and devolution of services would be a key piece of work over the next few years.

Cllr Howes said that he attends all meetings of Desborough Town Council in his ward and that principal councillor attendance at parish and town council meetings should be encouraged. He asked parish and town councils to let him know if there were difficulties. He said that NNC had to get rural public transport right for the whole area. He said that hearing from the parish and town councils at the conference had been the best part and that he saw it as a potential model for the new Kettering & Corby, and Wellingborough & East Northants Parish Forums.

Mike Scott thanked the guests and all delegates for engaging in a very useful session.

Northants CALC Chief Executive, Danny Moody, then presented the Council of the Year Award. He said "This year, and for one year only, and in this the most difficult year, the award for Council of the Year goes to each and every one of you that is still standing. If you are still standing after the biggest reorganisation of local government in this county for over 50 years. If you are still standing after the local elections in May, and the six-year term of office that they brought to an end. If you are still standing after all that a global pandemic can throw at you. If you are still standing, despite everything, then you deserve this award. Northants CALC is very proud to award the 2021 Council of the Year to all councils in Northamptonshire that are still standing."

He then called on all those present to give each other a big round of applause, before calling on Mike Scott as Chairman of Northants CALC to accept the award on behalf of all parish and town councils in Northamptonshire.

Mike Scott then congratulated all the clerks that had completed their Certificate in Local Council Administration (CiLCA) since the last conference, and the councillors that had achieved certification under the Councillor Development Framework.

Roade Parish Council won the prize draw for £300 in vouchers and a bottle of prosecco, generously donated by Wicksteed Playgrounds.

Mike Scott thanked the sponsors for their generous support, Cllrs Howes and Nunn for their presentations and positive engagement, and all the delegates for their attendance and participation. He concluded by saying that the 2022 Conference & AGM will take place on Saturday 1 October 2022 and asked people to put the date in their diaries.

The meeting closed promptly at 12:56 p.m., enabling a quick exit for all the Northampton Saints fans who needed to be in place for a 2pm kick off!

A copy of the speakers' slides and the draft minutes are available below.

Download All Papers

Individual Papers

2020 Northants CALC Conference & AGM

THANK YOU everyone that attended the Conference and AGM. It was great to see everyone. Below are the presentations from the guest speakers:

Please find below the papers for the 2020 Conference & AGM.

The link to join the 2020 Conference & AGM is in the programme above and also in the invitation that was emailed to all member councils in August, which is copied below for reference.

2019 Northants CALC Conference & AGM

The 72nd Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Northamptonshire County Association of Local Councils took place on Saturday 5 October 2019 at Moulton Community Centre. The event clashed with the England v Argentina match in the Rugby World Cup, so a low attendance had been feared. Instead, another record attendance was achieved with over 150 attendees in total, with 138 registered councillors and clerks representing over ninety member councils.

Hot sausage or bacon rolls provided an incentive for delegates to turn out on a Saturday morning and there was a good exhibitor area providing information on products and services aimed at parish and town councils (see list of exhibitors below).

Vice President, Jeffrey Greenwell, presided once again in the absence of a permanent President and he ensured that the AGM formalities were disposed of with the minimum distress. The existing vice presidents and directors were all re-appointed and delegates approved an inflationary increase in membership fees for 2020/21 (see all AGM papers below).

Northants CALC Chief Executive, Danny Moody, then launched the Building Communities prospectus, saying that the Association had organised many workshops, focus groups, surveys, and research on Local Government Reorganisation over the past two years and that all the engagement work had been distilled into the document, which sets out the role of parish and town councils in the context of unitary local government, building stronger and safer communities and acting as the bridge between communities and the unitary councils. Danny Moody thanked the parish and town council clerks and councillors who had attended the meetings and workshops and given their valuable input, and Deputy CEO, Lesley Sambrook Smith, who over a relatively short time has become an expert on LGR for the Association.

At the core of Building Communities is a proposal that each unitary council, West Northamptonshire Council and North Northamptonshire Council establishes a Community Partnerships Office (CPO) to act as a first point of contact between the unitary council and the parish and town councils in its area. Northants CALC believes that establishing good communications is fundamental to building an effective and respectful relationship between the two tiers of local government.

Jeffrey Greenwell then introduced the first keynote speaker, Sarah Mason the Chief Executive of the Cornwall Association of Local Councils who spoke on Life after Unitary Reorganisation – The Parish & Town Council Perspective (download slides).

Sarah described the journey that parish and town councils had been on since Cornwall went unitary in 2009. She outlined that services that had previously been delivered by the principal councils now fell to parish and town councils to continue if they wanted to, and the inescapable realities that brought in terms of increased Band D tax rates levied by parish and town councils (average £56.50 in 2008/9 to £124.65 in 2018/19).

Sarah described the challenges of change and said that for councils that wanted to achieve things it was a great opportunity. She said that "The biggest challenge is your mindset" and pointed out that it would take at least three or four electoral cycles for unitary local government to be considered the normal way of doing things (as opposed to the "new" way). Sarah said that parish and town council must prepare by mapping everything in their communities and having a conversation with the electorate about what was important to them to protect.

Sarah described the key role that the Cornwall Association played and continues to play in being the bridge between parish and town councils and Cornwall Council.

She ended by saying that divorce, death and moving are known to be highly stressful life events, and that Local Government Reorganisation was like all three rolled together!

After such a thought-provoking and challenging presentation there were lots of questions, with subjects ranging from how to "sell" large Band D increases to the electorate, the status of Neighbourhood Plans after LGR, and how new councils are created in previously unparished areas.

Delegates then had a break to recharge their coffee cups and sample the delicious cakes and fruit on offer. It was also another good opportunity to visit the exhibitor stands.

After the break, the second keynote address was given by Dr Jonathan Owen, Chief Executive of the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) who spoke on the National challenges facing the first tier of local government (download slides).

Jonathan wished Northants CALC a happy 72nd birthday and said that it was nationally recognised as a leading CALC. He praised the Building Communities prospectus and said that he supported its central tenets of building relationships, partnerships and trust.

Jonathan listed NALC's lobbying successes recently, particularly the exemption for parish and town councils from Council Tax Referendum Principles and the removal of business rates on public loos. He said that current national events made dealing with parliament challenging but that NALC was achieving some notable wins. Jonathan noted that parish and town councils are moving into different service areas, such as health and wellbeing, and that they now provided a vast array of services. He invited delegates to state some of the things their councils were doing, and it was a big list:

w new village hall w installing play equipment w community orchard w taking over library w electric charging points w village design statement w holding a charter day w greenways w recreation areas w town celebrations w party in the park w christmas lights w outdoor gym w extending community centre w broadband mast w museum w town ranger w CCTV w sponsored PCSO w taking over village green w providing giant hedgehogs w

He illustrated that government supports the parish sector and there had been recent positive comments from the Secretary of State and local government ministers.

NALC is working on important policy initiatives, such as reducing loneliness and social isolation, which now kills more people than smoking. Jonathan said the parish sector is alive and kicking and that press coverage was sometimes not truly reflective of all the good things it is doing. He noted the lack of diversity in the sector and urged all delegates present to encourage new candidates to come forward for election in May 2020. Finally, he called for all councils to invest more in training and development in order to build the capacity of the sector.

A range of questions followed from such diverse subjects as youth councils, parish charters with principal councils, and climate change.

Jeffrey Greenwell then read out the names of all the officers that had achieved the sector qualification, the Certificate in Local Council Administration (CiLCA), since the last AGM: Lesley Sambrook Smith (Northants CALC), Helen du Bois (Helmdon Parish Council and Greatworth Parish Council), Hanneke Soans (Irthlingborough Town Council and Pilton, Stoke Doyle & Wadenhoe Parish Council), Malcolm Stewart (Boddington Parish Council) and John Scott (Shutlanger Parish Council). Jeffrey asked for a congratulatory round of applause.

Danny Moody then read out the commendation for the Northamptonshire Council of the Year Award, which went to Daventry Town Council in recognition of its efforts to have services and assets devolved to it from Daventry District Council so that they can be delivered at the most local level possible.

Danny said "More than a year ago the council started a conversation with DDC about the possible transfer of services and it has been a resource-intensive and challenging negotiation. It came to a point when the council had to make a decision as to whether to bail out, or to go for it. It decided to go for it." "This council recognises that its core role is to do what is in the best interests of its community, and to work hard to that end... The dedicated and engaged councillors who freely give up their time to make a difference, and in particular the Clerk, whose passion and determination is the driving force to making it all happen. It's those people and their tireless efforts that this award recognises and congratulates."

The Council of the Year award was presented by Jeffrey Greenwell to the Deputy Mayor of Daventry Town Council, Councillor Lynne Taylor.

After a redraw due to the first winner not being present (never leave before the prizes!), the prize draw was won by Cllr John Coatsworth from Helmdon Parish Council. The prize of £300 in vouchers and a bottle of champagne was generously donated by Wicksteed, one of the UK's premier outdoor playground equipment suppliers, and it was presented to Cllr Coatsworth by Jeffrey Greenwell.

Jeffrey Greenwell thanked the sponsors and exhibitors for their support, Moulton Parish Council for hosting again, the Leaders of Wellingborough Borough Council, South Northamptonshire Council and Northampton Borough Council for attending as guests, and of course the two speakers for their thought-provoking talks. Jeffrey thanked all the delegates for their attendance and participation, and finally Danny Moody and Lesley Sambrook Smith for arranging the conference and for all the good work they do for parish and town councils in Northamptonshire.

Delegates were sent on their way by 1:00 p.m. and there was no mention of the result in the rugby, just in case anyone was rushing home to watch their recording without knowing the score!

The Association cannot function without the support of its member councils, so we are very grateful to everyone who gave up their Saturday morning to be with us. We hope you might come back next year to do it all over again... Saturday 3 October 2020!

Thank you to our sponsors, exhibitors and supporters:

• SLCC (www.slcc.co.uk/branch/northamptonshire)

• Streetscape (http://www.streetscape-products.co.uk)

• 2Commune (https://www.2commune.com/)

• BHIB Insurance (https://bhibcouncils.co.uk/)

• HAGS Play (http://www.hags.co.uk)

• Wicksteed Playgrounds (https://wicksteed.co.uk/)

• Northamptonshire Neighbourhood Watch Association (http://www.northamptonshireneighbourhoodwatch.co.uk/)

• CCLA (Investments) (https://www.ccla.co.uk)

• Community Action Suffolk (https://www.communityactionsuffolk.org.uk/support/your-community/insurance-for-parish-councils/)

• Zeta Lighting (http://zetaled.co.uk/)

The papers for the Conference & AGM are below:

2018 Northants CALC Conference & AGM

The 71st Northants CALC AGM took place on Saturday 6 October 2018 at the Moulton Community Centre in Moulton, Northamptonshire. 135 delegates from 73 parish and town councils were greeted on arrival with delicious hot bacon rolls from the Forget-me-Not Café at Moulton Community Centre. Fresh fruit was also available but quite a bit of that was left over at the end, whereas all the bacon rolls completely disappeared!

The first part of the meeting transacted the AGM business. All vice presidents and directors were re-elected and the meeting received and adopted the Annual Report & Accounts for the year ending 31 March 2018. The membership subscription rate for 2019/20 was agreed, with a 2.3% increase in line with inflation (see papers below).

The first speaker was Nick Plumb, Policy Officer at Locality, the national membership network for community organisations. Nick has a politics and public affairs background and has had a diverse career, including being a Research Assistant and Translator for the Taiwan Alliance to End the Death Penalty! Nick's thought-provoking presentation was titled "Localism Rebooted: Power Partnerships and the Need for Change" and he spoke about Locality's People Power report and that parish and town councils were the "first responders" of local government, closest to the people they serve. He called for "a fundamental rethink of how people, power and politics intercept" and noted that "when communities are done to it reinforces the unhelpful paternalistic relationship between people and politics" rather than encouraging people and communities to be self-reliant and self-supporting. Nick described the work of Locality's Commission on the Future of Localism, which was set up in 2017 and led to the People Power report. The Commission heard from community representatives across the country who feel frustrated about the difficulty in influencing decisions that affect their area. Nick said "We talk about co-design and co-production as buzzwords, but participatory democracy needs to be made real". A lively question and answer session followed the presentation with subjects ranging from the most effective governance structure for principal authorities, to the need to attract new people from diverse backgrounds into the parish and town council sector and the role of technology in making councils more engaging.

Download a copy of Nick Plumb's presentation.

After a break, during which delegates refuelled with coffee and cakes, the AGM received a presentation from Alistair Jones, Associate Professor at the Local Governance Research Unit (LGRU) at De Montfort University on "Challenges & Opportunities for Local Councils". Alistair provided an entertaining overview of the LGRU's Councillor Commission, which conducted a year-long independent review of the role and work of the councillor (of all tiers) and of the contribution made by councillors to the governance of their communities and the country. Alistair contended that the parish and town council sector is still trying to shake off the Vicar of Dibley image. He said "The perception is that's what parish and town councils are like; idiots and busybodies. But you are proper LOCAL government. The most important thing is your proximity to the community." The report of the Councillor Commission - The Voice of the Councillor – makes twenty recommendations for how local government can be strengthened, including calling for a national independent inquiry to be undertaken by the National Association of Local Councils to fully understand the relationship between parish and town councils and principal authorities with the aim of identifying best practice and producing a national framework for parish-principal relationships. Alistair identified several areas that are holding parish and town councils back, such as the current legal power to create new councils being vested in district councils. "Why should borough and district councils be in charge and have the final say on whether or not a new parish or town council should be created?", he challenged. The Commission calls for the power of principal councils under the Local Government & Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 to conduct Community Governance Reviews to be abolished so that communities themselves can decide how they are governed. The questions following the presentation highlighted the frequent frustrations that parish and town council have of not being able to influence decisions locally, with several questioners describing situations where local views were overturned by the principal councils or by the Secretary of State. Alistair recognised the frustration and said there were no easy answers but that "the problem will persist until the system [of local government] is changed". Making reference to Local Government Reorganisation in Northamptonshire, Alistair said "There is a mania for going for bigger units of local government, whereas local government should be all about being connected to localities and communities" adding "it is essential that every community has a parish or town council representing it".

Download a copy of Alistair Jones's presentation.

Vice President Jeffrey Greenwell then congratulated and led a round of applause for the clerks who have achieved the CiLCA qualification since last year's AGM (Gill Wells from West Haddon and Hackleton Parish Councils, Jo Moore from Loddington Parish Council, Jayne Bunting from Boughton Parish Council, Mike Billingham from Great Houghton Parish Council, Emma Gibson from Spratton Parish Council, Becky Jones from Wilbarston Parish Council and Claire Tilley from Cranford Parish Council).

Northants CALC CEO, Danny Moody, then read out the supporting statement for the Northamptonshire Council of the Year Award, which this year went to Glapthorn Parish Council, a council with fewer than 250 electors and a precept of less than £10,000. Last year it took out a loan to upgrade its street lighting to modern and energy efficient LED and earlier this year the council completed a Neighbourhood Plan with 88% of votes cast in favour of adopting the plan with an incredible 61% turnout. The Neighbourhood Plan was delivered within budget and in under 2 years from start to finish.

The prize draw this year for £300 in vouchers and a bottle of champagne generously donated by Wicksteed Playgrounds was won by Thrapston Town Council. Cllr Sam Cribb from Thrapston received the prize from Wicksteed Areas Sales Manager, Jodie Midlane.

Jeffrey Greenwell closed the meeting by offering thanks to all the sponsors and exhibitors (see list below), to "Anne Kirkland and her team from Litchborough" for putting on a great event, to Moulton Parish Council for hosting the AGM for a second year and to the two guest speakers for their presentations. Jeffrey thanked all the delegates for supporting the AGM, and Danny Moody for his dedicated service to parish and town councils throughout the year.

The success of the 71st Northants CALC AGM was down to all the clerks and councillors from across the county who gave up their Saturday morning to attend. The Association is extremely grateful for the support and we look forward to seeing you back again for the 72nd AGM! (put the date in your diary now… 5 October 2019!).

Thank you to our sponsors, exhibitors and supporters:

• SLCC (www.slcc.co.uk/branch/northamptonshire)

• Streetscape (http://www.streetscape-products.co.uk)

• 2Commune (https://www.2commune.com/)

• Wicksteed Playgrounds (https://wicksteed.co.uk/)

• Came & Co Insurance (https://parishinsurance.co.uk/)

• Northamptonshire Neighbourhood Watch Association (http://www.northamptonshireneighbourhoodwatch.co.uk/)

• CCLA (Investments) (https://www.ccla.co.uk)

• Snows Timber (http://www.snowstimber.com)

Below is the agenda for the 71st Annual General Meeting of the Northamptonshire County Association of Local Councils (Northants CALC) held on Saturday 6 October 2018 at Moulton Community Centre.

Also below are:

  • Item 3 – Appointment of directors for 2018/19
  • Item 4 – Minutes of the AGM held on 7 October 2017
  • Item 5 – Annual Report & Accounts for the year ending 31 March 2018
  • Item 6 – Membership Subscriptions for 2019/20

Northants CALC AGM 2017

More than 160 people converged on Moulton, Northampton on Saturday 7 October 2017 for the 2017 Northants CALC Annual General Meeting. 130 councillors and clerks representing over eighty member councils registered for the event, which is a new record for the Association. The venue was the superb and impressive Moulton Community Centre, a brand new community building opened in June 2017 (https://www.moultonnorthants-pc.gov.uk/community-centre1.html). The capital project was delivered by Moulton Parish Council and is a fantastic example of what parish councils can achieve with the right resources, drive and vision. Visitors were greeted on arrival with hot bacon rolls provided by the excellent Forget-me-Not Café at Moulton Community Centre (https://www.facebook.com/forgetmenotmoulton/).

In a changed format this year, the AGM opened with a BBC Question Time-style panel comprising the MP for Daventry, Chris Heaton-Harris, the Chief Constable for Northamptonshire, Simon Edens, the Chairman of the National Association of Local Councils (NALC), Sue Baxter, and the Deputy Leader of Northamptonshire County Council (NCC), Matt Golby. Questions were submitted the week before by delegates and in true BBCQT fashion the panellists did not know what the questions were in advance.

The first question was put by Kevin Nichols of Everdon Parish Council who asked "Does the panel know what happened to Localism?". It gave the panellists an opportunity to give their perspective on how local services are delivered and whether or not there are opportunities for parish and town councils to be part of the solution. The consensus appeared to be that some progress on Localism had been made but that much more needed to be done to drive the delivery of services down to the most local level possible.

Sarah Rodger with the mic

The second question was from Stephen Hiscock of Hunsbury Meadows Parish Council: "With continuing reductions in the number and visibility of local police, are low crime areas now being ignored?", a reference to the perceived lack of [visible] policing outside the main towns in the county. The question sparked a good discussion that addressed the reality of reducing resources and increasing demands, particularly in new areas such as cyber-crime and online safety and child exploitation.

Sam Dobbs of Harlestone Parish Council asked the third and final substantive question: "With cuts in virtually all public services in the county, there is growing opportunity for parish councils to fill in the gaps. What services could be devolved to us and will finance follow function?". Every panellist said they could see opportunities for parish and town councils to be part of the solution, whether it be sponsoring a PCSO or taking over grass cutting. However, in answer to the second part of the question it was clear that it will be up to parish and town councils to fund such services from the precept or from raising income from other sources.

The traditional "and finally…" question went to Sara Homer of Wootton Parish Council who asked "In your role, what one thing would cause you to have a coughing fit?" in a reference to Theresa May's infamous speech at the Conservative Party Conference earlier in the week. The panel gave suitably light-hearted answers, which meant that the session ended on a high note and with warm applause from the audience.

After a thirty minute refreshment break, with tea and delicious cakes from the Forget-me-Not Café, the delegates reassembled for the formal business of the AGM. With the recent resignation of Dr Paul Blantern from Northamptonshire County Council (NCC), the AGM was chaired by Vice President Jeffrey Greenwell and the appointment of a new President of the Association was delegated to the board of directors. The vice presidents and directors were re-appointed as per the recommendations in the paper below. The Annual Report for the year ending 31 March 2017 was received and the subscription fees for 2018/19 were agreed.

NALC Chairman Sue Baxter made a short presentation in lieu of a President's Address. Sue gave an overview of national issues and outlined the NALC Prospectus to government. She called for councils to be fiscally responsible and stressed that where precepts are significantly increased the council must be able to demonstrate that it has engaged with its electorate. She urged councils to be flexible in funding and to look for diverse income sources, such as Community Shares. Sue acknowledged that much needs to be done to build the capacity of the sector but nevertheless encouraged councils to be confident and not afraid to rise to new challenges. Sue took questions from the floor and concluded by thanking delegates for all they do for their communities.

The last part of the AGM consisted of awards and presentations. Recognition was given to the clerks who have achieved the CiLCA qualification since last year's AGM (Josie Flavell from Crick Parish Council, Geoffrey Gill from Yardley Hastings Parish Council and Shirley Wong from Overstone Parish Council) and to Raunds Town Council for gaining Quality Gold accreditation under the Local Council Award Scheme (LCAS). Northants CALC Chief Executive, Danny Moody, then read out the commendation for the Northamptonshire Council of the Year Award, which went to Weedon Bec Parish Council in recognition of the courage, fortitude and leadership of the clerk and councillors in very difficult circumstances. The chairman of Weedon Bec Parish Council, Zoe O'Toole, collected the award, which is sponsored by Came & Co, providers of parish council insurance. The prize draw this year was won by Nicki Phillips, Clerk to Lilford cum Wigsthorpe & Thorpe Achurch Parish Council. The prize of £300 in vouchers and a bottle of champagne was generously donated by Wicksteed Playgrounds and was presented to Nicki by Wicksteed Areas Sales Manager, Jodie Midlane.

Jeffrey Greenwell concluded the meeting by offering thanks to all the sponsors and exhibitors (see list below), to the "unflappable Anne Kirkland" and her team for putting on such a superb event, to Moulton Parish Council for the wonderful hosting and to the four guest speakers for their input and insight. Jeffrey thanked all the delegates for their attendance and participation, and Danny Moody for his diligent and excellent administration of proceedings.

The feedback received at the end of the event and afterwards suggests that the 70th Northants CALC AGM was the best one yet! Roll on next year!!

Thank you to our sponsors, exhibitors and supporters:

• Northamptonshire County Council (https://www3.northamptonshire.gov.uk/pages/default.aspx)

• SLCC (www.slcc.co.uk/branch/northamptonshire)

• Playforce (http://www.playforce.co.uk/)

• 2Commune (https://www.2commune.com/)

• Wicksteed Playgrounds (https://wicksteed.co.uk/)

• Northamptonshire Neighbourhood Watch Association (http://www.northamptonshireneighbourhoodwatch.co.uk/)

• NCC Emergency Planning (www3.northamptonshire.gov.uk/councilservices/fire-safety-and-emergencies/emergencies)

Delegates enjoyed hot bacon rolls on arrival and cakes at the interval.

The Question Time format was popular with delegates.

Vice President, Jeffrey Greenwell stepped in to preside over the AGM business.

L to R: Jeffrey Greenwell, Wicksteed Areas Sales Manager, Jodie Midlane, and the Clerk to "Lilford etc" Parish Council, Nikki Phillips with the £300 voucher and bottle of champers for winning the prize draw.

L to R: Jeffrey Greenwell, Chairman of the National Association of Local Councils, Sue Baxter and Chairman of Weedon Bec Parish Council, Zoe O'Toole, with the trophy for Northamptonshire Council of the Year.

2017 AGM Papers

Below is the agenda for the 70th Annual General Meeting of the Northamptonshire County Association of Local Councils (Northants CALC) held on Saturday 7 October 2017 at Moulton Community Centre.

Also below are:

  • Item 4 – Appointment of directors for 2017/18
  • Item 6 – Minutes of the AGM held on 8 October 2016
  • Item 7 – Annual Report & Accounts for the year ending 31 March 2017
  • Item 8 – Membership Subscriptions for 2018/19

Northants CALC AGM 2016

Great support from clerks and councillors from accross the county. With thanks to Fiona Baker from Brackley Town Council who took the photographs on the day.

The 2016 Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on Saturday 8 October 2016 at Wootton Hall, Wootton Park, Northampton by kind invitation of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Northamptonshire, Mr Stephen Mold, who was also the keynote speaker.

Over 130 delegates registered for the event and with guests, exhibitors and staff there were more than 150 people in attendance, which is a fantastic effort. That clerks and councillors from across the county give up their Saturday morning to attend the AGM is very much appreciated and we trust that it was a useful and worthwhile meeting for those that attended.

The first part of the meeting deals with the business of the AGM and I am pleased to report that Dr Paul Blantern was re-appointed as President of the Association for 2016/17. Paul was unable to be at this year's AGM due to a family commitment so Vice President Mr Jeffrey Greenwell stepped in and did an admirable job of keeping the meeting flowing.The vice presidents and directors were re-appointed as per the recommendations in the paper below.

In his address Jeffrey Greenwell focused on three key areas. Firstly he gave delegates an overview of the debate that has been going on for several years nationally regarding who the members of the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) are; is it CALCs, parish councils or both?It is a thorny issue and Jeffrey explained that a motion regarding membership would be debated at the NALC AGM on 20 October 2016 and that the outcome will be discussed further with member councils in Northamptonshire.Next Jeffrey alerted delegates to the government's proposal to introduce precept referendum principles, or capping, to parish councils, whereby if they wish to raise their precept by more than 2% a referendum supporting that would be required.Clearly this would make no sense to parish councils and Jeffrey proposed from the chair that "This AGM reminds Her Majesty's Government of its commitment to localism and urges the government not to pursue a proposal to introduce capping of local councils".Not unsurprisingly the motion was carried nem. con.Finally Jeffrey gave thanks to Richard Lewis, chairman of Northants CALC, who is stepping down from the chair at the end of his three year term.Richard has steered the Northants CALC ship through another busy period and will hand on to the next chairman at the board's annual meeting in November.

The AGM then considered two motions from member councils (see paper below). The first motion called for government to standardise the number of seats on a council based on electorate.Delegates sympathised with the underlying issues but the view emerged that in the spirit of localism it should be up to each council, not government, how many seats they have.Parish and town councils that wish to vary the number of seats on the council can apply to the district or borough council for a Community Governance Review (CGR).Consequently the motion was lost.The second motion called for parish and town councils to be included in the conversation regarding local government reorganisation in Northamptonshire.With a couple of minor amendments to clarify and strengthen the motion it was carried nem. con.

After a break that included tea and coffee and delicious cakes (and, I understand, even more bacon rolls!) the delegates reconvened in the main hall for the keynote address.

Stephen Mold was elected as the Police and Crime Commissioner for Northamptonshire in May 2016 and has made a very fast start to his four-year term of office. He said that it was very beneficial to him to be able to meet so many councillors and clerks all at one time.He said that he has one simple overriding priority: to make Northamptonshire safer.He said that he did not have all the answers but by working together great things can be achieved.The Police & Crime Plan will be out for consultation very soon and he urged all councils to read it and send in their views and comments. Stephen said he would welcome input from parish and town councils and said "You are the grass roots of democracy in our county.You are uniquely placed to help us deliver".

Stephen explained the key issues facing the police over the next few years, including the rise in cybercrime which brings new challenges and requires new approaches to deal with it. And all against a backdrop of reducing budgets and ever-increasing pressure on precious resources."The reality is that the days of every village having a Bobby are gone, but every community still has a right to feel safe".Early intervention and working better and smarter together are absolutely key to achieving the aims.

Stephen then took questions from the floor, which ranged from continuity in local policing to mental health funding to increasing collaboration between the emergency services and the highways authority. One particular area of questioning was to do with the enormous housing growth in Northamptonshire, and the need for the police to engage at the very earliest stage with developers to design out crime and then to provide sufficient policing resources for the new community.

Stephen Mold wrapped up by saying that he tries to spend every Friday "out and about" and that he would welcome invitations from parish and town councils. Furthermore he runs open sessions every four to six weeks at Wootton Hall for councillors of any tier, parish, district or county, where any issue can be raised and talked through and he urged parish and town councillors to attend.

The only remaining business was to recognise those clerks who have achieved the CiLCA qualification during the year (Felicity Ryan, Kirsty Buttle, Caroline Holgate and Alison Benson) and those councils that achieved accreditation under the Local Council Award Scheme (LCAS) (Weedon Bec Parish Council, Chelveston-cum-Caldecott Parish Council, Brackley Town Council and Hardingstone Parish Council). The chairman presented a certificate to Hardingstone Parish Council and warmly congratulated all the clerks and councils for the efforts.The prize draw, which was a £100 voucher generously donated by Greenbarnes Ltd (supplier of notice boards and signs), was won by Cllr Martin Flanagan on behalf of Pitsford Parish Council.

Jeffrey Greenwell closed the meeting by giving thanks to Anne Kirkland and her team for putting on such a well-organised event, to the sponsors and exhibitors (see list below), to Stephen Mold for use of the venue and for his speech and most importantly to all the delegates.

It was a very successful AGM with a record attendance. We have quite a lot to live up to next year!

Thank you to our sponsors and exhibitors:

Caroline Holgate (standing in the distance) and Alison Benson (standing) receiving congratulatory applause for achieving the CiLCA qualification.

Cllr Dee Kelk receiving the Local Council Award Scheme certificate on behalf of Hardingstone Parish Council.

Cllr Martin Flanagan picking up a voucher for £100 for Pitsford Parish Council, winners of the prize draw. The prize was generously donated by Greenbarnes Ltd.

69th Annual Conference and AGM

Saturday 8 October 2016

10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.

(Refreshments on arrival from 9:15 a.m.)

Wootton Hall, Wootton Park, Northampton

"21st Century Community Safety"

Northamptonshire is a relatively safe county and rural crime is low, but that doesn't mean that there aren't significant community safety concerns, and where crime is low the impact of a single incident can be very high. But we know that policing must change in response to the changing operational environment and the inevitable financial pressures that all parts of the public sector face. It's a time for good partnership working between the police and the communities they serve and for innovation in service delivery.

The 69th Northants CALC AGM will include a keynote address from Mr Stephen Mold, the Police & Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Northamptonshire. Mr Mold was elected to the position in May 2016 and this is an early opportunity to hear directly from him about his vision for community safety in Northamptonshire and how parish and town councils can play their part.

The meeting will also conduct the business of the AGM, including appointing the board for the ensuing year, setting the 2017/18 membership fees and debating motions submitted by member councils.

Northants CALC AGM 2015

A view from the front!

The 68th Northants CALC AGM took place on Saturday 17 October 2015 at the Forum, Towcester by kind invitation of South Northamptonshire Council (SNC). It was a real pleasure to be in SNC's new building, which provided a fitting venue for the proceedings.

There was a record attendance this year, with 125 delegates representing 78 member councils.

The AGM was chaired by the Association's President, Dr Paul Blantern, Chief Executive of Northamptonshire County Council. In his President's Address Dr Blantern outlined NCC's Next Generation model and indicated how parish and town councils have a part to play in delivering services in the future. He described the proposed future structure of the county council and said that the democratic interface will be the retained "NCC Group". Dr Blantern fielded a number of questions from delegates about the model and said that "NCC is going through the most radical change ever, with unprecedented demand for services and an unprecedented reduction in finances".

The routine business of the AGM was conducted swiftly with the meeting voting in favour of the re-appointment of the existing directors and vice presidents. The AGM also voted to approve a proposal from the board that "membership subscriptions be increased by 0% for 2016/17" in line with CPI. On another recommendation from the board the AGM agreed to discontinue the role of Honorary Treasurer in favour of the newly created role of Internal Controls Director (ICD). Mr Bernard Lock, who had been Honorary Treasurer since 2011 and linked with the Association in one guide or another for four decades was thanked for his sterling service over many, many years.

The AGM received two motions from member councils. Yardley Hastings Parish Council moved that the law be changed so that statutory undertakers have a duty to notify and consult parish councils about proposed street works. Raunds Town Council moved that Class M permitted development, which allows a premises to be converted from a shop to a dwelling without the need for a planning application, be removed. Both motions were debated fully with a range of views expressed but it was clear that both were very well supported and the votes were in favour by a very large majority.

The keynote presentation was by James Kingston from the Department for Communities & Local Government (DCLG). James followed the theme of "The best councils..." and said that analysis of delivering services locally has shown a Return on Investment of 1:3.4 (Our Place Programme). He said "The best councils are ones that are getting the benefits from being small, neighbourhood-level councils, closest to the people, drawing on their natural strength to represent communities". Talking of the opportunities of Localism James said "People want to be involved in decisions at a local level. The drivers of Localism are leading to a redesign of public services. We want to support parish and town councils because it is a time of change and opportunity and we want you to take those opportunities". In responding to a question on the challenge of capacity building James acknowledged that different sized councils have different needs but said that councillors should see themselves as elected representatives, not volunteers and that clerks were effectively "CEOs of SMEs". He said there was a real challenge around up skilling councillors and clerks but that help is available from NALC, CALCs and principle councils. James also encouraged delegates to visit The My Community Advice Service and also The My Community Network on the Just Act forum.

The meeting then recognised the achievements of Jenny Hodgson, James McKechnie, Deborah Rush, Alison Moses, Tina Charteress and Julia Tufnail in gaining the Certificate in Local Council Administration (CiLCA) and of Higham Ferrers Town Council in becoming Northamptonshire's first council to be accredited at Quality level under the new Local Council Award Scheme.

Sarah Rodger, Clerk to Castor, Nassington, Deene & Deenethorpe, Lilford-cum-Wigsthorpe & Thorpe Achurch and Warmington Parish Councils won the prize draw of £100 Love to Shop vouchers generously donated by Jewson.

Thanks go to all the delegates for their attendance and input, to the sponsors including Jewson, 2Commune, Wicksteed Playgrounds and Northamptonshire County Council, and to all the people who had a part to play in making the AGM a very successful event, not least Northants CALC's Training Manager Anne Kirkland, without whom the event would not happen.

The presentations from the event are listed below.

68th Annual Conference and AGM

Saturday 17 October 2015

10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m.

(Refreshments on arrival from 9:15 a.m.)

The Forum, Towcester

"The Best Councils…"

What makes a good council good? What is "best practice"? Clearly these are subjective questions and there is no one-size-fits-all answer. This AGM will focus on quality and what that actually means for parish and town councils.

The 68th Northants CALC AGM will include a keynote address from James Kingston from the Department for Communities & Local Government (DCLG) to give the national view of what "The Best Councils" could or should look like and there will be contributions from Northamptonshire parish and town councils giving real-world examples of their own "best practice".

The meeting will also conduct the business of the AGM, including appointing the board for the ensuing year, setting the 2016/17 membership fees and debating motions submitted by member councils.

AGM Papers

Last updated: Thu, 17 Nov 2022 12:08