About Council

About Council

The pages in this section of the website cover all information regarding Council, including a list of our councillors and their responsibilities. You can also find contact details and their register of interests.

There is a section with information about how to report assorted problems that you may find around in the village.

The 'complaints' section details how to make a complaint about the council, a councillor or the clerk, and the procedure that will follow

Policies, codes and standing orders has all our current policies linked. Some of these can be found elsewhere on the site but are all contained on that page for ease of use.

Contact us has details of how to contact the clerk, or the chairman, of the Parish Council.

What does a parish council do?

People often talk about ‘the council’ without realising that there are several different tiers of local government. Parish councils are the first tier and we don’t do bins, schools, social care or roads. So, what do we do?

We work with other authorities to highlight the needs of the parish. This might include reporting potholes, discussing recycling issues, consulting on the draft local plans or reporting concerns to the police. We have a right to comment on all planning applications in the parish and aim to do this however, we do not actually make planning decisions (that’s the Planning Authority).

We do a lot of maintenance in the parish; maintaining green spaces, keeping verges safe or improving accessibility. We operate the public toilets in the Recreation Ground, which we believe are an important community asset. Occasionally, we coordinate parish-wide events such as Beating the Bounds, Remembrance Sunday events or street parties. These are always a great occasion for the community to come together.

Community groups may be entitled to parish council grants; this year we have given money to groups including South Zeal Carnival, Okehampton and District Community Transport Group, South Zeal Recreation Ground Association and North Dartmoor Search and Rescue Team. Any local organisation can apply using the grant application form on our website.

In the last four years, the Parish Council has installed 5 public access defibrillators around the parish. These are vital pieces of life-saving equipment and are regularly monitored. We’ve set up a village emergency telephone system (VETS - 01837 500999) that can help in an emergency. We’ve also recently installed a night landing site for Devon Air Ambulance Trust. We hope these things are never needed but hope they have made the parish a bit safer.

The Parish Council cannot achieve all of this without the help of all our many wonderful volunteers who help with events, form the Flood Defence Group, operate the VETS, maintain the defibrillators, act as Snow Warden or look after footpaths. We are very grateful to all of them and to anyone who helps but who isn’t mentioned! If you would like any more information about anything in this article then please contact the clerk on 01837 53570, or clerk@southtawtonparishcouncil.org.uk.