|Which Hat to Wear?|
When the Chair of Hedge End Town Council announced last month that the Annual Parish Assembly for Hedge End would take place on 12th March, Rupert was worried. There was a planned private meeting of Borough Councillors in his diary for that day. This meant that a total of nine dual-hatted town councillors would have to choose between town council and borough council duties, a situation that has caused problems recently as reported in Eastleigh News.
Rupert himself has been very keen to attend the parish assembly in recent years, to report in person to the people of Hedge End what the LAC has been up to in the last twelve months, and this conflict would also affect the Chair and Vice Chair of the Town Council, and four of the five committee chairs, all of whom serve on both Borough and Town Councils.
It was therefore good news for them all when it was announced at January's Local Area Committee that the Borough meeting would be postponed for a week, enabling all borough councillors to attend the Hedge End parish assembly after all.
The Annual Parish Assembly is not a meeting of the Town Council, but a meeting for the whole parish of Hedge End, organised by the Town Council. It is a statutory requirement to hold this meeting between March and May each year, and it offers a chance for the Council to report back to its parishioners and for those parishioners to ask questions and feed back on the Council's performance. In recent years Hedge End has also used the event to present its "Serving the Community" awards, although last year attendance was low as I reported here.
Picture credit: Eric Bouliane