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Home Quality Council Scheme Local Council Award Scheme

Local Council Award Scheme

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Local Council Award Scheme 

Local Council Award Scheme

What is it about and why should our council bother?

John Duddington writes:

Let’s answer the second question first: in nearly fifty years of involvement with local government it has been my experience that parish and town councils are often regarded by both the public and other local authorities as amateur and lacking weight. I know that this view is wrong and that in the last thirty years there has been a marked improvement in the standard of local councils aided by the introduction of professional training for clerks, something which I have been proud to be involved in. Still the impression persists and councils need to demonstrate that they are professional bodies. Not only this but life is so much more complex, and more litigious, than in 1965 when I started and this applies to all Local Authorities.

So I welcome this new scheme which replaces the Quality Town and Parish Council Scheme, which was introduced by the Government in 2003. It is vital that local councils set standards of good practice and excellence and encourage continuous improvement to raise these standards.

In addition I intend to keep up the pressure on principal councils to recognise the achievement of local councils in gaining this new award.

If I have made you think that it is at least worth looking at the new scheme for your council then what does it involve?

A major difference from the old scheme is that there are three different levels:

(a) Foundation Award

(b) Quality Award

(c) Quality Gold Award

The result is that you can decide which level suits you best. For example many councils were put off the old scheme by the rules that the clerk must be qualified and the electoral mandate rule: that at least two thirds of members must be elected. Now the new scheme allows councils to gain the Foundation Award without having to satisfy these criteria although you will need to do so for the other awards. Again the new scheme allows you to apply electronically so that the cumbersome file that was used in the past will not be necessary.

John Duddington, Chairman, County Accreditation Panel.

Further information about the scheme is below. Please click on the link to read or download

Local Council Award Scheme






Specialist provider to Parish Councils, Small Public Sector, Charitable, Community and Voluntary Organisations


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Phone: 07759 171030

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The South Worcestershire Development Plan and Neighbourhood Plans

More than 30 parish and town councils in South Worcestershire have either completed a neighbourhood plan or have one in preparation. But it is not yet clear how much influence these will have on the new South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP2), now being prepared by a Joint Planning Team from Worcester City Council and Wychavon and Malvern Hills District Councils. A major aim of the SWDP2, as with its predecessor, is to allocate sites for new dwellings to meet the targets for ‘housing need’ determined by central Government. It is therefore important that parish and town councils play a major part in shaping the SWDP2 to protect the character of our communities and to ensure that any new housing meets the needs of local people.

Martley Parish Council would like to hear from other parish and town councils in South Worcestershire who either have a neighbourhood plan or are developing one. In particular, we would like to call a meeting to discuss a common approach to the Joint Planning Team which is developing the SWDP2. Please contact Michelle Alexander, Parish Clerk at clerk@martley-pc.org.uk.