Most people seem to think that a councillor just attends council meetings once a month. Nothing could be further from the truth. The duties and pleasure of being a councillor are many and varied, however it is the ordinary day to day contact with local people in his or her community that is the most important part of being a councillor.
The Uplyme Parish Council consists of 10 members elected by the Parish every 4 years, and it employs a Clerk to the Council. This latter post carries with it a remuneration and the Clerk is responsible for the proper running of council meetings, for overseeing that members abide by the Code of Conduct, and for the financial and clerical duties for the Council.
The Parish Council meets once a month but the day to day running of Council affairs is undertaken by various committees, working parties and Councillors.
The Chairman of the Council is elected annually and oversees and is expected to take an active part in the running of the Parish. He or she is responsible for forming a good working relationship with East Devon District Council and Devon County Council, attending civic functions both within and outside the parish, and to be readily available to listen to parishioners.
The Parish Council is not the planning authority but is consulted on planning matters, as are neighbours. In the majority of cases the EDDC decides applications in accordance with the Parish Council recommendations. When the planning authority approves a significant development in the village, the Parish Council works with the developer to influence design. The designs of both Barnes Meadow and Glebelands were greatly improved through Parish Council involvement.
The Parish Council is responsible for cemetery maintenance and providing plots for burials.
The Parish Council together with Devon Highways is responsible for maintaining the 57 footpaths and bridleways which run through the Parish, a considerable task undertaken by the supervisor and his/her team. Since the signing of the Parish Paths Partnership contract, the Parish is allocated a sum of money for minor maintenance and the footpaths working party is able to carry out repairs and to replace signs more speedily than in the past.
The Council is also represented on the Devon Association of Parish Councils, the Ring and Ride scheme, Trusteeship of Mrs Ethelston’s School, Trusteeship of Uplyme Charities, representation on the King George Field Committee, and the Village Hall Committee. Councillors also attend ad-hoc meetings on various topics of local interest.