Chairman's Blog

The Parish Council wielding the pitch fork on behalf of the Village
Many of you good folk may only contact the Parish Council, or become aware of us when you have a problem or are making a planning application.
So what are we about?
We are one of the smallest Parish Councils in the New Forest and interestingly our patch is located within and replicates the old monastic manor of Beaulieu Abbey. The majority of the parish is owned by one family. We have one of the lowest precepts, ie. the parish council's share of the council tax which is set by us here in Beaulieu. We were created in 1884 when local Parish Churches gave up the responsibility for Parish drainage.
So what do we get up to at our monthly meetings?
We have three essential functions. We pass our views of our community to the tiers of government above us. Quite frequently the district and the county councillors are present at our meetings. As we are in a National Park we have an extra tier of government above us, the National Park Authority and we usually attend their quarterly information meetings. We try to promote and sustain the local character and quality of Beaulieu life. Unlike other larger parish councils we are in a unique position of not having to provide a lot of services. However we do look after the bus shelters, some of the village open spaces and gardens, some seating and notice boards. We are always looking out for the little things in parish life, that need attending to and which may otherwise go unnoticed. We keep a watchful eye on the open spaces, car parks, pot holes, footpaths, street lighting and noise ... and if all else fails ... a responsibility in burying the dead! We have a legal right to inspect all planning applications and comment upon them. These views have to be taken into consideration by the principal authority when granting or refusing permission. All our parish councillors wear their politics lightly, not trying to score cheap political points off one another. We are loyal to the village first. We give freely of our time and hopefully are the true representatives of the "grass roots"
It has been said that Parish Council work is like house keeping .... A thankless task noticeable only when left undone.