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Is anyone a Parish Clerk?

(8 Posts)
PigeonPie Wed 17-Aug-11 21:25:00

I have been asked if I might like to take up a local Parish Clerk job and I was just wondering if anyone has done this and found it enjoyable / challenging?

I want something which will fit in with school / playgroup and holidays etc and this seemed to fit the bill, but experiences of others would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

Furball Thu 18-Aug-11 07:13:33

Me!

I work from home for two pari shes. 1 = 5 hrs a week and the other is 7.5 hours.

I find it fits in very well with my life. It is a very responsible job and not just filing and typing minutes. YOU are the main contact and info hub of the council.

I recommend it to anyone, (I assume you will be working from home?) it fits in very well with my life and I re jig the hours around me, so if one day I want to go shopping or ds is ill or whatever I just leave it.

How big is the Par ish?

PigeonPie Thu 18-Aug-11 10:03:44

Hi Furball - thank you. The one available at the moment is for a very little Council at about 12 hours a month, but there may be others around in due course so I could ease myself in gently. Yes, I'll be working from home and it does seem ideal. I've got a study (once I've cleared it --of all the crap that's silted up in the last three years!--) although I think we might need to find room for a bigger filing cabinet as our three drawer one is already quite full of our own stuff.

Does it get lonely working on your own or do you talk to enough people not to miss the office environment?

Have you done any training and is your district council supportive? Do you do your payroll or does the district do it?

Sorry about so many questions. I'm going to see the person who does it currently this evening so I'll know more about what it entails then.

Furball Thu 18-Aug-11 13:53:04

It can get lonely at home - I suppose that is the only downside really. But the pros far outweigh that, just it being so flexible.

Are you also going to be the Financial Officer? (I am) but some have a separate person. - it's no big deal really and you just do the accounts as you go along. the only faff is the annual return which is not that difficult.

I do my own pay - I work out how many hours a month I work and pay myself bi-monthly with the cheque being signed at the meeting. (I am the only employee)

I have done training - we have a very supportive association of p arish and town c ouncils - this is your local one

my one does loads of training (I have done a fair few different courses over the years) they are also available to ask or email ANY question or query you may have. I have found my one totally invaluable. Annual they hold a xmas bash where all the clerks (who want to) come together for a chat and there's usually a speaker informing you of the latest stuff.

Furball Thu 18-Aug-11 13:57:40

My one top tip is create (if there isn't a separate one already) a hotmail account or whatever with the councils name. It just helps separate work from home stuff - just in case you were thinking of just using your personal email. That way you haven't got stuff coming in to you own inbox at the weekend, when you are not working.

I forgot to say - I don't have alot to do really with the district. they are a separate entity. I obviously forward onto them comments etc regarding planning or whatever, but generally they are there and I am here.

PigeonPie Wed 24-Aug-11 09:54:52

Hi Furball, thank you for your answers. Sorry to be tardy in the reply, I have had to spend a couple of nights working on my CV and covering letter which is finally don - it's amazing how much time it takes when it hasn't been updated for 10 years shock.

I'd be really interested in doing training and it seems like a great job. I hope I can make it work and am not too daunted by all the legal stuff, which does seem a bit frightening at the moment. However, I enjoy a challenge and am ready to take on something a bit different now having been at home for the last six years.

Tiggles Mon 29-Aug-11 19:49:31

Only just seen this. I work as a community council clerk 30hrs a month and love it. It fits in really well with having 3 kids, with only one at school. The 'downside' is that there isn't an office so I have a large filing cabinet filling up my dining room.
Like Furball, I am the Responsible Financial person so have to get everything ready for the audit, sort out the payroll etc.
Most stuff is taking minutes at meetings (2 a month) and writing all the relevant letters onto our local authority, chasing them up as they rarely reply, putting info about our meetings on the website and noticeboards, occasionally dealing with the public - mainly if the streetlights aren't working, occasionally advising on legal info - e.g. we had a councillor not turn up to 6 consecutive meetings so there had to be an election etc logged with electoral services, but there is a big book entitled 'Standing Orders' that gives out all the info.
i have found all our councillors very supportive and helpful, several of our councillors have previously been the clerk albeit about 10years + ago, so they are on hand to help if needed.
The council in the community next to us though the chap has much more fixed hours - he has an office and has to work specific days.

PigeonPie Fri 23-Sep-11 13:57:04

Thank you LittleMissGreen and Furball - I've only just seen your reply LMG! Anyway, I'm pleased to say that I have got the job and went to my first meeting on Wednesday. I'm going to have a handover session with the outgoing clerk next week.

DH and I have also managed to dig out the study, so I've got a space to work (this is very exciting as it had turned into a dumping ground!) but I'm thinking that I might need more filing space in due course.

Thanks for the advice about the email address. I've already set up a new gmail account and have worked out how to link it to my personal one! All systems go here!

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