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A parish council is an elected body in the first tier of local government. Elections for the voluntary role of parish councillor takes place every 4 years. Kimberley and Carleton Forehoe Parish Council consists of five members; three from Kimberley and two from Carleton Forehoe. Parish councils play a vital part in representing the interests of the communities they serve and aim to improve the quality of life and the local environment for the whole community. A parish council will be kept informed of any local changes such as to rights of way, planning applications and road works. The parish council raises a precept each year as part of the council tax, which can be used to benefit the community. The parish council employs the Parish Clerk who works for and with the council to action its decisions.

In order to understand and represent local views and priorities, a parish council will engage with the local community to understand their views about issues such as planning, roads and highways. Councillors also make representations on the behalf of their community with statutory bodies such as district, county councils and highways.

Kimberley and Carleton Forehoe Parish Council may be consulted by South Norfolk Council about planning applications in the two communities.  Comments made by the parish council are taken into account by SNC but the final decision is made by SNC.

How do parish councils comment on planning applications?

  • Parish councils are a consultee on all planning matters.  Due to the timing of meetings, it may occasionally be neccessary for the Council to consider an application by email rather than in public.  Where this is the case, residents are welcome to make their views known via the Parish Clerk, who circulate these to Councillors.  Where an application may need to be considered in public, and additional meeting may be called at the discretion of the Chairman.
  • The comments agreed in the council meeting are submitted in writing by the Parish Clerk to the relevant planning authority. This process is the same as that of an individual wishing to comment on a planning application.
  • Parish councils are only consultees and have no powers to approve or reject planning applications, they can only comment or not on applications.  The planning authority can only take material considerations into account when determining a planning application.

Parish councils can comment on:

  • Central and local government policy and guidance
  • Replies from agencies such as Environment Agency, Highways Authority
  • Representations from others - neighbours and other interested parties
  • Effects on an area - character, over-development, layout, position, design and external appearance of buildings and landscaping 
  • The need to safeguard valuable resources such as good farmland or mineral reserves
  • Highway safety issues - such as traffic generation, road capacity, means of access,
  • Public services - such as drainage and water supply 
  • Effects on individual buildings - such as overlooking, loss of light, overshadowing, visual intrusion, noise, disturbance and smell
  • Effects on a specially designated area or building - such as green belt, conservation areas, listed buildings
  • Effects on existing tree cover and hedgerows 
  • Nature conservation interests - such as protection of badgers, great crested newts  
  • Public rights of way
  • Flooding or pollution
  • Precedent - where the proposal would inevitably lead to inappropriate development
  • The proposed type and colour of the materials to be used 
  • The exact nature of any proposed planting or boundary treatment

Parish Councils may not comment on:

  • Speculation over future use
  • The identity of the applicant or occupant 
  • Unfair competition 
  • Boundary disputes 
  • Breach of covenants and personal property rights, including personal (not Public) rights of way 
  • Loss of a private view 
  • Devaluation of property