LALC ENews 14th November 2022

This newsletter is provided to member councils through the clerk and should be circulated to all councillors.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

13th Edition of Arnold-Baker on Local Council Administration


The comprehensive and authoritative guide to local government law has been extensively revised for its 13th edition.  

List price: £164.99

Price through LALC - £131.99, which is a saving of 20%.

Please contact Lindsey to order a copy.


꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

LALC Fees for 2023-24

Please note the following proposed increases for LALC services for 2023-24:

LALC’s affiliation fee

7.7p per elector (for budgeting purposes factor in a 4% increase)*

NALC’s affiliation fee

7.71p per elector (for budgeting purposes factor in a 4% increase)*

Annual Training Scheme

£5 increase per electorate banding:


Electorate up to 250 - £90


Electorate up to 500 - £100


Electorate up to 1,000 - £115


Electorate up to 2,500 - £140


Electorate up to 5,000 - £155


Electorate up to 7,500 - £165


Electorate up to 10,000 - £175


Electorate above 10,000 - £185

Full day courses

£65 per day

Part-day sessions

£25 per session

*Based on electorate figures due to be released in January 2023

**Fees quoted are exclusive of VAT

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

LALC Website Maintenance Service (WMS)

Level of service

Costs for FY 2023-24

What's included?

Documents uploaded to your LCC website by the Webmaster

Access to the Webmaster for advice, queries or problem solving

Access to current guidance documents from the Webmaster

Updates as appropriate

Access to e-group for peer support. **


20 hours - £340 plus VAT






10 hours - £170 plus VAT

5 hours - £85 plus VAT


£50 plus VAT*






* This service is available to LALC member councils and is additional to the membership subscription and Annual Training Scheme. Costs are doubled for non-member councils.

** The e-group will be primarily led by clerks providing support for each other. Pete will monitor and contribute information and answers occasionally, but this won't be his priority.

Councils with an LCC website may decide they don't wish to take up any of these options and will maintain their own site. We can offer three additional areas of support for these councils which will be included in the Annual Training Scheme:

1.      Access to e-group as above**

2.      Related course: LCC website JADU Basics via Zoom. Dates are available via the LALC website.

3.      Related course: LCC website JADU Advanced via Zoom. Dates are available via the LALC website.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰


We still have availability at the following sessions. Book now to avoid disappointment! (Please book via the new CRM if possible).


Council Powers and Procedures

16th November


Please note that this training is being held at Mablethorpe Library & CAP, LN12 1DP, and not Dunholme as previously advertised.

Charity Law

13th December

14th December



Clerk’s Networking Day (including SLCC Lincolnshire branch meeting)

7th December


Dunholme Village Hall, LN2 3SU

Charity Law (Day 1 of 2)

13th December



Charity Law (Day 2 of 2)

14th December



***Training venues are booked once a number of bookings have been received. This allows LALC to book venues based on where the majority of delegates are travelling from. If there are less than 10 bookings on any course, the course will automatically be held at the LALC Office, 8 Market Rasen Road, Dunholme, Lincoln, LN2 3QR***

Current vacancies


Closing date

Nettleham Parish Council


11th November

Nettleham Parish Council


11th November

Holland Fen with Brothertoft Parish Council


Not stated

Caistor Town Council


No closing date

Spridlington Parish Council


7th November

Cowbit Parish Council


30th November

Nocton Parish Council


30th November

Ruskington Parish Council

Administration Assistant

29th November

South Luffenham Parish Council (Rutland)


No closing date

North Luffenham Parish Council (Rutland)


No closing date


꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner - Safer together

The Police & Crime Commissioner Annual Survey has been issued asking residents to give their views about the Police Service in Lincolnshire and what the priorities for the next financial year should be.  Click here to complete the online survey

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Clarification on 2022-23 Pay Agreement

The £1,925 increase on all NJC pay points 1 and above applies to full-time employees. Part-time employees will receive a pro-rata amount. See the new NJC pay scales for details of the new hourly rates.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Free Civility Webinars offered by LGA

The Civility and Respect project have been working in collaboration with the Local Government Association to support local councillors and council staff who are experiencing bullying, harassment and intimidation. The LGA have shared details of two virtual webinars which have been specifically developed to support councillors’ safety and online safety for councillors.  The webinars will be delivered virtually via zoom and are free to attend using the promo codes detailed below.  Anyone who is interested is welcome to take advantage of this offer of free training.

 Councillor Personal Safety Webinars


As part of the LGA’s Civility in Public Life Programme, we are hosting in partnership with Miranda Smythe from the Baikie-wood consultancy, a series of webinars on councillor personal safety and handling online abuse and intimidation. The first programme on personal safety has been specially devised for councillors who are keen to improve their awareness of personal safety. Built around the role of the elected member, the sessions provide practical advice and guidance. The webinar includes references to surgeries, canvassing, home visits and managing unexpected doorstep visitors. The next webinar will be held on Wednesday 7 December, 1:30-3:00pm. Please sign up via the link: Promo code: PSC20712.


(TIPS - When booking please enter ‘NO’ to ‘Member Organisation’; ‘NO’ to ‘Are you from a council that is not a member of LGA’; if you haven’t used the LGA booking system before, please create a password in the ‘password’ field; enter the promo code in the field under payment and the amount due will reset to £0).

 ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Qualification criteria and Disqualification from being a Councillor

 All councillors must meet certain qualification criteria at the time of election or co-option as specified in S.79 Local Government Act 1972. These criteria are listed below in the top half of our co-option application form available from the LALC Document Template section in the LALC portal. 

 The lower half of the form are the disqualification criteria and if any of these apply at any time either at the time of election, co-option or during a Councillor’s term of office they are disqualified from being a Councillor by virtue of S.80 and S81A Local Government Act 1972. 


re you a British, Commonwealth or other European Union Citizen and not require leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom or have indefinite leave to remain?                                                                                                                                                            Yes   /   No 


Are you aged over 18?                                                                                              Yes   /   No

To qualify you must be able to answer ‘Yes’ to at least one of the questions below

a) Are you on the electoral register for Parish/ Town Council?                          Yes   /   No

b) Have you lived either in parish or within 3 miles

of its boundary, for at least a year?                                                                         Yes   /   No

c)  Have you been the owner or tenant of land in the parish for at

least a year?                                                                                                              Yes   /   No

d) Have you had your only or main place of work in parish

for at least a year?                                                                                                   Yes   /   No

You must be able to answer ‘No’ to all the questions below to be eligible to serve as a councillor.

i)                    Are you the subject of a either bankruptcy restrictions order, interim order

or a debt relief or interim debt relief order?                                   Yes    /   No

ii)                   Have you within the last five years been convicted of an offence in the UK, 

the Channel Islands or Isle of Man and has been sentenced (whether

suspended or not) to imprisonment for three months or more without the

option of a fine?                                                                                Yes   /   No

iii)                 Are you disqualified by order of a court from being a member of a

local authority?                                                                                 Yes   /   No

iv)                 Employed by the Parish / Town Council, a joint committee or holds

a paid office?                                                                                    Yes  /   No                        

v)                   Subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences act 2003

                      or Sexual Risk Orders?                                                             Yes  /   No                                                                                          


Clerks must ensure that any potential co-optees to the Parish/ Town Council satisfy the qualification criteria at the time of them seeking co-option and the disqualification criteria do not apply before the council resolves to co-opt.  If any of the disqualification criteria apply to any current councillor they should disclose this to the Monitoring Officer as quickly as possible so that the Elections Team can decide if their seat is vacated.

 ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Time for Internal Audit?

 LALC offers an internal audit service from its panel of internal auditors.  This will usually consist of two parts with the majority of the audit being undertaken in the Autumn period to check that internal controls and governance is in place as well as financial checks.  This process allows councils to put right weaknesses within the current financial year so they do not have to be reported on the AGAR at the end of the financial year, which can then focus on ensuring the accounts are correct and earlier weaknesses have been addressed.

 A couple of reminders to all council clerks:

 Remind all councillors to check their register of interests is up to date and there are no changes to be reported.  A minute to show this has been considered once or twice a year is helpful (this could be minuted under the usual ‘Declaration of Interests’ agenda item instead of a new item). 

 Also ensure that a bank reconciliation and a report has been prepared showing current expenditure against the adopted budget has been prepared and considered by council and all payments have been authorised in accordance with the adopted financial regulations (hopefully based on the model Financial Regulations sections 3, 4 and 5).


If any council is interested in using LALC’s internal audit service please email


꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Cost of Living updates


Useful Cost-of-Living Support information and links can be found on the new LALC website:      

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

New LALC website/CRM access


If any clerk has not yet received your invitation to our new website/CRM please contact us. The old website will be switched off at the end of December and all training must be booked via the new site after that point.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Emergency Plans

Does your council have an Emergency Plan in place? Are you working towards putting an Emergency Plan in place? Are you currently reviewing your Emergency Plan?

Please let us know so that we can pass this information on to LCC Emergency Planning team.


꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

NALC Legal Topic Notes


All current NALC Legal Topic Notes (LTNs) are accessible by the Clerk via the LALC CRM.

 ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

Does your council have a ‘good news’ story or an example of best practice you’d like to share with other councils? If so, please let us know so that we can include it in a future edition of eNews.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

An update on the Energy Bill Relief Scheme

Utility Aid has been working with suppliers and partners to understand the impact of the Energy Bill Relief Scheme. The scheme affects anyone with a commercial energy contract, including the local (parish and town) council sector.

The key points are as follows:

  • The scheme will provide a discount on energy usage between 1 October 2022 and 31 March 2023.

  • Your supplier will automatically apply the discount.

  • The discount will be based on the difference between the wholesale price on the day your contract was agreed and a government “supported wholesale price” of £211 per megawatt-hour (MWh) for electricity and £75 per MWh for gas.

  • Fixed price contracts will only be eligible if agreed after 1 December 2021, including new contracts agreed between now and March 2023.

  • Variable or out-of-contract rates will also get a discount based on the daily wholesale price over the period, but the discount level is capped, so customers are exposed to further increases in pricing that are being seen in the market.

Read Utility Aid's latest Energy Report.

Utility Aid’s advice is as follows:

  • Take sensible steps to reduce your usage - such as ensuring lighting and heating is off when the building is empty.

  • If you are out of contract, variable and deemed & due for renewal — we want to stress the importance of getting into a contract as soon as possible to help protect you from eye-watering “out of contract” rates.

  • Fixed and protected contracts — if you want maximum price certainty, check the terms and conditions of a contract carefully before you sign it. You want to ensure that the whole contract is fixed for the duration, not just for the energy itself. Some contracts are not as fixed as they first appear.

  • Monitor your energy usage — take regular meter readings and keep a record to ensure you are being billed for the actual amount you have consumed. This may also help you identify opportunities to reduce your energy costs.

  • VAT and Climate Change Levy — please check you are being correctly charged on your bill.

Collective purchasing
You can align your energy contracts under a protected and fixed contract for councils wanting to have budget security for a more extended period. During the course of this contract, you will receive the opportunity to join the national charity tender, which will allow councils to purchase as part of a collective for their future energy provision. Find out more about Utility Aid's
national charity tender.

Please complete this
online enquiry form if you want to contact Utility Aid. Utility Aid will offer green tariffs to interested people and continue providing ongoing support with net-zero and energy management upon request.

꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰꙰ ꙰꙰꙰

NALC Chief executive's bulletin

Release: 4 November 2022

NALC and SLCC sign new partnership statement

NALC’s chair, Cllr Keith Stevens, attended the Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC) national conference this week, where he formally
signed an updated partnership statement and memorandum of understanding with SLCC’s chair, Steve Trice. The signing occurred during Keith’s speech at the conference, where he congratulated SLCC on its 50th anniversary and recognised “the vital part that professional, modern clerks play in the sector”. He spoke about his priorities as NALC chair. He identified staying relevant, planning ahead, and working together as crucial issues over the last 50 years, which would be even more critical in the decades ahead. Keith’s speech also included a short video from NALC’s president Baroness Scott of Needham Market, where she extended her own anniversary congratulations to SLCC’s new president, Linda Carter, and everyone at the conference. She also highlighted the importance of professional clerks being committed to training and development, supporting councillors to deliver their aspirations, adapting to change and being “the local government professionals our communities deserve”. The conference also included a panel session on the Civility and Respect Project where Michelle Moss, project manager, spoke about the excellent progress being made across the project, including the latest resource of a new HR podcast series to better explain local councils' responsibilities as employers.

NALC study tour 2023 to Newport Pagnell Town Council
This week I was pleased to
announce that NALC is heading to Newport Pagnell Town Council in Buckinghamshire on 27 and 28 June 2023 for the first study tour since the COVID-19 pandemic. On the study tour, attendees will learn more about the council's devolved leisure services, its management of its broader portfolio, and its challenges. You'll be able to learn more about the study tour and book your places here.

NALC National Network: Super Councils

The NALC National Network: Super Councils held its latest online meeting on 1 November. Here are a few highlights:

  • Attendees considered the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) invitation for views from councils on Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and their role in local areas. Issues raised by attendees included concerns over the impact opposition from local businesses and upper tiers of local government can have on the functionality of BIDs, the importance of BIDs in securing additional funding for events and local businesses, and a suggestion of sharing good practices as a way for the government to further support and guide BIDs.

  • The network discussed the Levelling Up, Housing and Communities committee inquiry on funding for levelling up, which NALC will be responding to and has published a consultation seeking views from councils. Members flagged the need for direct funding for local councils, the ad-hoc nature of funding distribution as critical obstacles to local levelling up initiatives and whether there were better ways of measuring deprivation so that specific communities did not fall through the cracks.

  • Other topics covered included the impact of the cost-of-living crisis and lobbying on the dependants’ carer’s allowance.

Local government pay negotiations
The Local Government Association (LGA) came to an agreement on the 2022/23 pay offer with the unions representing local government employees this week. The terms of that agreement include the following:

  • With effect from 1 April 2022, an increase of £1,925 on all National Joint Council (NJC) pay points 1 and above.

  • With effect from 1 April 2023, an increase of one day to all employees’ annual leave entitlement.

NALC has published an employment briefing (login required) which includes updated pay scales, and we will also be updating the annual leave policy template to reflect these changes. If local (parish and town) councils would like further advice on these changes, please get in touch with your county association.

COSIPL chair calls for the government to reconsider its report
It was good to see Lord Evans, chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, urging the government to reconsider the committee’s 2019 report on
Local Government Ethical Standards. The committee has published his recent letter to the secretary of state for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, which expresses his disappointment that many of the Committee’s recommendations had not been accepted by the government despite clear evidence that the sector backed their call to strengthen the arrangements in place to support high ethical standards. NALC is also continuing to press the government to revisit the committee’s recommendations, which is among our priorities for engaging with the new government.

On the blog: what can councils do about the climate emergency
Tackling the climate emergency is daunting, especially for councils that may not have access to large budgets, resources, or staff.
But a wealth of information and support is available to help councils get started, such as NALC’s National Network: Climate Emergency, our dedicated webpage and assistance from other organisations we are working with. One of those organisations is the Centre for Sustainable Energy. In the latest blog on the NALC website, Megan Blyth writes about the support available to councils from their dedicated community team.

Fortnightly meeting with county officers
At this week’s meeting with county officers, we were joined by
WorkNest, NALC’s HR partners. WorkNest is currently updating NALC’s Good Councillors Guide to Being a Good Employer and is consulting on improvements and changes needed to the guide. WorkNest also presented services available through their partnership with NALC as additional support to county associations.

Out and about
Lisa Etchell, projects officer, attended the Dorset Association of Parish and Town Councils clerks’ conference in Dorchester on 19 October 2022. Discussions centred on creating a Working Together charter for all Dorset councils under the current unitary council structure. Hopefully, this will promote more effective partnership working and help foster positive relationships between the tiers. There were also talks on standards in public life and an excellent presentation on personal resilience and self-protection (part of the wider Civility and Respect Project training programme), which gave an exciting insight into behavioural psychology.

And finally...
Congratulations to colleagues recognised at the 
National Association of British Market Authorities Awards 2022. Terry Frostick of Saffron Walden Town Council won Market Manager of the Year for Small Markets, and Bridport Town Council were crowned Market Team of the Year for Small Markets. Well done!

Release: 11 November 2022

NALC Empowering Communities conference 

It was great to hold our Empowering Communities conference at the start of this week on 7 November, albeit impacted by the rail strike (then called off at the last minute!) which resulted in us pivoting from a hybrid event to online only. Thank you to the 200 or so colleagues that joined us comprising councillors, clerks, county association staff, our sponsors BHIB Councils Insurance, Blachere Illumination and CCLA and other supporting organisations, and some media outlets. It really was a packed programme of 18 speakers, covering some really important issues such as building dementia friendly communities, housing, climate change, resilience and civility and respect. Do check out NALC’s Twitter @nalc for highlights throughout the event. And I was particularly pleased the new minister for local government, Lee Rowley MP, gave his first very speech in the role at our event – you can read more here including the full transcript of his speech. The local government magazine LGC also ran a story on his speech which you can read here (login required). It was also good to hear from the shadow local government minister, Alex Norris MP, who was equally full of praise for the sector which does “extraordinary work, day in and day out for your communities. I think that was a real proof of the importance of a hyperlocal model”. I also wanted to share a few highlights from the closing remarks by NALC’s chair, Cllr Keith Stevens, who said: 

  • It was good to hear recognition of the importance of local (parish and town) councils from the minister and shadow minister, but we need to hold their feet to the fire to get the policies we need, from powers to funding to support and more. 

  • He urged more councils to step up to take action on the big issues facing our country to ensure our sector remains relevant and make sure local MPs know about their great work. 

  • He encouraged councils to get involved in the Civility and Respect Project, sign the Pledge, adopt the policies, and go on the training. 

  • Areas with elections next year must redouble efforts to get people to stand, promote the difference local councils can make, in coming weeks put May’s elections on the agenda, ensuring election costs are in the budget and they have a plan to encourage people to stand and make use of NALC’s Make A Change campaign resources. 

  • He never ceases to be amazed by what our councils can achieve, what our sector can achieve, when we work together – councils, clerks and councillors, and NALC, Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC), county associations and others, including our partners. 

NALC's latest peer challenge takes place at Cirencester Town Council 

Last week, I was delighted to participate in the latest joint NALC and Local Government Association two-day peer challenge at Cirencester Town Council. I’d like to thank the town council for inviting us as it was a privilege to hear about their outstanding work. I was part of a review team that looked at what worked well, where the council could do better, how effectively it responded to local needs, and we then fed back thoughts on its future strategy development. We wereimpressed by the council's ambition, evident through achieving the Quality Gold Award accreditation in the Local Council Award Scheme, its work on health and well-being, and tackling loneliness and climate change. Other highlights included revitalising the market square to strengthen Cirencester's position as a market town and securing volunteer support for the local information centre, which received 16,000 visitors by the end of September. 

NALC National Network: Young Councillors 

The NALC National Network: Young Councillors held their latest online meeting on 9 November. Topics and issues discussed included the White Ribbon campaign and how to get involved in helping NALC support White Ribbon Day on 25 November, continuing to use the WhatsApp group to provide mutual support but also for updates on NALC’s work, how councils were responding to the cost of living crisis and supporting their community such as though grants to local groups and food banks and providing ‘warm rooms, local elections in May 2023 and NALC’s Make A Change campaign, and ideas for future agenda items and speakers. 

NALC Policy Committee 

NALC’s Policy Committee held an additional, informal meeting on 9 November. Since their last meeting, the Committee had been undertaking more work on a policy motion from the Devon Association of Local Councils on speed limits on single-track roads. They have now agreed to adopt an informal policy on lobbying government to make it mandatory for traffic authorities to consult local councils when amending or maintaining speed limits in their areas. The Committee also had an in depth consideration of the Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Committee inquiry into levelling up funding which NALC will be responding to by 18 November 2022. 

Out and abouts 

This week Anders Hanson, member services manager, attended the Locality Convention in Sheffield. The event brought together around 400 people from charities and community organisations across the country. The agenda included an opportunity to hear from policymakers, receive training, and listen to inspiring stories from people making a difference in their communities. Locality is currently highlighting the We’re Right Here campaign for a new Community Power Act and the value of ‘co-production’ where service users and community organisations are as much a part of designing and managing local policies and services as councils and government are. 

SAAA recruitment for new independent board members 

The Smaller Authorities Audit Appointments(SAAA) are recruiting new independent board members. SAAA was set up by NALC to procure external audit for the sector and has to date successfully run two procurement rounds to provide external audit for all local councils which has saved many millions of pounds. This is an exciting opportunity to work on the next phase of the development of SAAA and play a role in the improvement of the capacity and reputation of local councils, drainage boards and other smaller authorities, and influencing the future of audit. And this is around the 80th job advert advertised by NALC this year! You can find out how to advertise your vacancies here

Kings Coronation Bank Holiday 

The Prime Minister has proclaimed an additional bank holiday across the United Kingdom to mark the Coronation of His Majesty King Charles III next year.The bank holiday will fall on Monday 8 May 2023, following the Coronation on Saturday 6 May 2023.In line with the bank holiday to mark Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation in 1953, this will be an opportunity for families and communities across the country to come together to celebrate. I know that many local councils will already be planning events and activities to mark this historic occasion. As the bank holiday falls just after local elections on 4 May affecting around 6,000 local councils, further guidance on the notice periods for first meetings will be provided in December’s legal bulletin for county associations. 

Boundary Commission for England final consultation  

The Boundary Commission for England has opened a final consultation on proposed new constituency boundaries as part of the 2023 Boundary Review. The commission is required by Parliament to undertake an independent and impartial review of all constituencies in England, to rebalance the number of electors in each constituency. The 2023 Boundary Review also requires that the number of constituencies in England increases from 533 to 543. Residents and communities can respond to the consultation by visiting by 5 December. You can read more in our news story here

NALC National Network: Climate emergency 

The NALC National Network: Climate emergency met on 27 October, here are a few highlights: 

  • Andrew Maliphant provided an update on a funding for climate action note which had been circulated to the Network containing a potential list of funding sources for local councils; ongoing work to develop funding and good practice templates was also supported. 

  • It was agreed that the WhatsApp group still provides a useful forum for the network to communicate between meetings. 

  • The first draft of a local climate action plan templatewas endorsed, when this is finalised it will be made available on the Community Works website and the NALC dedicated climate change web page

  • Updates were also received on the Cumbria Green Space to Grow project and South Gloucestershire Local Nature Action Plans

  • Cllr Ed Gemmell from Hazlemere Parish Council and Scientists Warning Europe will be securing some scientist speakers for the first few network sessions of 2023. 

Rural Coalition letter to the prime minister 

NALC is a member of the Rural Coalition which has written to the new prime minister, Rishi Sunak MP, to highlight the role that rural communities can play in contributing to the country’s future success. The letter sets out some key actions which are fundamental to enabling real and positive growth and social change in rural England. You can read the letter here

New Civility and Respect Project guides   

The Civility and Respect Project has published two new guides on recruitment and roles and responsibilities, both of which are approved and endorsed by NALC and SLCC. 

And finally... 

Thank you for playing your part in markingRemembrance Day today and at the weekend. I know many local councils are involved in ceremonies and memorial services at war memorials, cenotaphs, and churches throughout the country to remember all those who have died in wars around the world. 

Jonathan Owen