Council of the Week: Welsh Newton and Llanrothal Group Parish Council
This week we would like to celebrate the work of Welsh Newton and Llanrothal Group Parish Council in Herefordshire.
Welsh Newton and Llanrothal Group Parish Council is quality council serving this local community in the county of Herefordshire. When we say 'quality' council we do not just mean in the usual way but that they have achieved this status in the sector's landmark benchmark scheme of Local Council Award Scheme.
The council was recognised nationally because of its use of a defunct phone box. A defunct phone box in Welsh Newton has proved a success as a library — one of the first in the county, which is being put into good use for the community.
The parish council bought the iconic red box from BT four years ago for £1 and filled it with books, brochures and information.
Craig Bligh, Welsh Newton and Llanrothal Group Parish Council chairman, said the kiosk on the village common had fallen into disrepair and was spruced up with paint, new glass and books by parishioners.
He said: "You can put in and take out - it is a revolving process and is accessible to anybody. People are just learning to become familiar with it."
As well as turning a phone box into a community asset, the council is also looking to shape and design the future development of the community via its neighbourhood plan.
In particular, the Herefordshire Association of Local Councils and the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) would like to further highlight the positive work that the does in the community for example in its Lengthsman scheme.
The "Lengthsman" is a contractor engaged by the parish council to undertake minor Highway issues, such as keeping drains clear, road signs visible and when possible topping up local winter grit bins. The Lengthsman also inspects and maintains our Public Rights of Way under the direction of the Parish Council.
Other notable work the council have carried out include:
Created 8km "Jubilee" walk to mark Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth celebrations
Produced Parish Plan 2012
Worked with local MP on Cross Boarder NHS issues
Councillors helped to produce and participating in World War 1 theatrical memorial event
Working on NDP with regulation 14 consultation planned after the May elections
NALC would like to congratulate Welsh Newton and Llanrothal Group Parish Council for its innovation, efficiency and exemplary work in engaging with the local community.