Residents of Barrow are encouraged to stand for a seat on a new town council to help make a positive and long-lasting impact on the community.
A new parish has been approved for the Barrow area and will come into effect on April 1.
Now, enthusiastic and community-minded residents are being encouraged to step forward to stand in the parish council elections which will take place on Thursday, May 4, 2023.
A special briefing for anyone interested in standing for a seat on the new Barrow Parish Council - as well as for parish clerks, political parties and the police - is set to take place at 10am on Monday, March 6 in the Drawing Room at Barrow Town Hall.
Barrow Borough Councillor Derek Brook, Lead Member for Community, urged people to seize the opportunity to make a difference to their town.
“The work that local councils do is exciting and rewarding,” he said.
“We want to see enthusiastic and engaged members of the community stand in the parish election for this brand new council.
“If you’ve ever thought about long-lasting changes you’d like to see in the area and have innovative ideas or concerns about a specific issue, this could be the role for you.
“A key part of the parish councillor's role is engaging with local people, groups and businesses to determine their needs, making decisions on the services and projects the council should take forward while also getting involved to ensure services meet the needs of the community.
“People from all backgrounds and experiences who are passionate about their local area are welcome to put themselves forward for election.”
The new parish of Barrow will be made up of the eleven existing Barrow Borough Council wards covering the unparished area of the borough: Walney North, Walney South, Barrow Island, Hindpool, Central, Ormsgill, Parkside, Risedale, Hawcoat, Newbarns and Roosecote.
There will be 21 seats and the number of parish councillors elected for each ward will be: Walney North 2; Walney South 2; Barrow Island 1; Hindpool 2; Central 2; Ormsgill 2; Parkside 2; Risedale 2; Hawcoat 2; Newbarns 2; Roosecote 2.
The new parish is being created following a community governance review and at a time of local government reorganisation which will see two new unitary councils; Westmorland and Furness Council and Cumberland Council, replace all six district councils in the county and Cumbria County Council.
From April 1, Westmorland and Furness Council will provide services in this area including education, adult social care and children and family services, libraries, highways, planning, licensing and refuse and recycling services.
It is proposed that the new Barrow parish council will have a base in Barrow Town Hall under a licence agreement with Westmorland and Furness Council. As a new local authority, it has a range of powers but can also work in partnership with other authorities such as Westmorland and Furness Council.
Anyone who would like to stand in the election will need to follow these steps:
- Contact the elections team: In the first instance you should contact the Barrow Borough Council elections team to find out about the process of standing for election by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01229 876318
- Ask for a nomination paper: Nomination papers may be obtained from the Returning Officer at the Electoral Services Office, Town Hall, Barrow-in-Furness who will, at the request of any elector for a ward, prepare a nomination paper for signature
- Wait for the Notice of Election to be published: This is when the elections process officially begins. Once the Notice of Election is published, the window for nominations is open
- Submit your nomination paper before the deadline: Following the Notice of Election being published, nomination papers must be delivered on normal working days during office hours (10.00 am to 4.00 pm) to the Returning Officer at the Electoral Services Office, Town Hall, Barrow-in-Furness, before 4.00 pm on Tuesday 4 April, 2023
- Polling Day: If an election is contested - there are more people standing for a seat than seats available in any ward - the poll in respect of that election will take place on Thursday 4 May, 2023.
Councillor Derek Brook added: “Standing for election isn’t as complicated as you might think, though it’s essential you follow the formal process.
“Help and advice on what to do is available from the borough council’s elections team and I would advise anyone considering this opportunity to get in touch.”
Anyone who would like to attend the above briefing on Monday, March 6 should contact the Elections Office at Barrow Town Hall in advance of the meeting either by email to email@example.com or phone on 01229 876318.
If you would like to find out more about becoming a parish councillor, please go to The Electoral Commission and Local Government Association websites.