Wem Rural Parish Council achieves Quality Award.
The Local Council Award Scheme exists to celebrate the successes of the very best local councils, and to provide a framework to support all local councils to meet their full potential. All local councils want to serve their local communities and make a real difference to the lives of the people that live there. This scheme offers councils the opportunity to show that they meet the standards set by the sector, assessed by their peers, and to put in place the conditions for continued improvement.
The Local Council Award Scheme has been designed to both provide the tools and encouragement to those councils at the beginning of their improvement journeys, as well as promoting and recognising councils that are at the cutting edge of the sector. It is only through the sector working together to share best practice, drive up standards and supporting those who are committed to improving their offer to their communities that individual councils and the sector as a whole will reach its full potential.
The scheme was created in 2014 and is managed on behalf of local councils by the Improvement and Development Board (IDB).
Councils can apply for an award at one of three levels.
- The Foundation Award demonstrates that a council meets requirements for operating lawfully and according to standard practice.
- The Quality Award demonstrates that a council achieves good practice in governance, community engagement and council improvement.
- The Quality Gold Award demonstrates that a council is at the forefront of best practice and achieves excellence in governance, community leadership and council development.
The scheme sets out criteria to meet at each level covering selected aspects of the council’s work. Councils can seek to progress through the tiers over time thereby raising standards. Councils of any size can aspire to an award appropriate for their budget and level of activity.
During October 2017, Wem Rural Parish Council submitted it application to be awarded the Foundation Award. In its report, the Accreditation Panel stated:
“The Panel applaud you on a number of areas. Information could easily be found on the Council’s website, the Council’s Newsletters are packed with information that is both useful and interesting and the fact that it is sent by post to every household in the community 3 times a year is to be commended. The Panel was also impressed by your high level of involvement in working with the community and other local authorities, in particular Shropshire Council.
The Panel congratulate you on the clarity of your website and the high standard of work that the clerk had undertaken.”
The Award was formally presented to the Parish Council at its meeting on 5 December 2017 by Accreditation Panel member, Parish Councillor Rosemary Abbiss.
Less than a year after achieving Foundation Level, the Parish Council appeared before the Accreditation Panel to submit its application for Quality Award. The Panel reviewed the submission and commented:
“The Accreditation Panel would like to thank the Chair, Councillor Liz Vernon, Councillor Staines and the Clerk, Ms Carole Warner, for attending the meeting and for your help in answering questions raised. The Panel agreed that the decision was easy to make and the Council had met the criteria required with flying colours. There was very little that they could see to improve. The Panel were impressed with the evidence of partnership working which was commendable as was the Council’s involvement with the Economic Forum. They also thought that the monthly action plan was an excellent tool to monitor progress and the police report template was very helpful for all.
The Panel congratulate you on the continued clarity of your website and high standard of work undertaken. I am therefore very pleased to write to you, on behalf of the Panel, to confirm the recommendation of your achievement of the Quality Level Award.”
On 13 August the Council received formal confirmation from NALC it had been awarded the Quality Award.
The Parish Council is now working towards the Quality Gold Award.