Annual Parish Meeting

What is the Annual Parish Meeting

The Conduct of the Annual Town or Parish Meeting

The Legal Background

  • To comply with the Local Government Act 1972, the Parish Annual Meeting must take place between 1 March and 1 June (both inclusive) in each year. The meeting cannot start before 6pm. The Annual Parish Meeting is not the Parish Council’s AGM.
  • All parish electors are entitled to attend the Parish Meeting and vote. The Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960 provides for the general public and the press to attend.
  • The Chair of the Council (or in his absence the Vice-Chair) must preside if present. If they are not present, the meeting may appoint a Chair for the meeting.
  • At least seven days’ public notice must be given. Fourteen days’ notice must be given if the agenda includes any of the following items:
    – dissolution of the Parish Council;
    – grouping the Parish with another Parish.
  • The notice must specify the business to be done. It must be signed by the Chair or any two Parish Councillors or, if necessary, six electors may act as convenors.
  • The expenses of the meeting are paid by the Parish Council.
  • There are some resolutions of a Parish Meeting that are necessary to, or binding on the Parish Council. These are:
    – that a resolution, by a well attended meeting, requiring the Council to provide allotments places an obligation on it to do so; and
    – that sometimes a trust instrument requires a resolution of the Parish Meeting for some act of the council as trustee.
  • Under the Charities Act 1960 the accounts of parochial charities must be laid by the council before the Parish Meeting.
  • No method of voting at the meeting is laid down. Any convenient method may be used, but a poll (i.e. a vote of the whole body of electors by ballot) may be claimed before the end of the meeting and must be held if demanded by ten persons present, or one-third of those present (whichever is the less), or if the Chair consents. The poll is conducted by a Returning Officer appointed by the District Council.



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