Local event strengthens council links

A conference between town and parish councils in Northumberland has highlighted the benefits of strengthening relations with the county council.

The second annual Northumberland Town and Parish Councils Conference took place last week at the county’s Fire and Rescue Service headquarters at West Hartford.

The conference highlighted the benefits that further strengthening relations between Northumberland County Council and town and parish councils has, based around an established joint action plan and charter.

Over a third of the 148 town and parish councils in the county were represented by over 80 delegates at the forum.

The day’s workshops focussed on neighbourhood planning, how statutory and voluntary sector organisations can work together to benefit local communities, and how the future of local services can be determined and influenced by community engagement.

‘Market place’ sessions throughout the day saw departments from across the county council sharing information about their services with town and parish councillors – and helping them with enquiries.

Coun Kathy Graham, chair of the Town and Parish Liaison Working Group, said: “It is fantastic to see the county council working with town and parish councils for the benefit of Northumberland’s communities.

“We can continue to see the successes of these improved relationships through consulting with local people, using their feedback to shape joint working.”

The event was formally opened by Councillor Kath Nisbet, civic head of the council.