Published: 19 May 2021


The Dorset Association of Parish and Town Councils DAPTC has presented West Moors Town Council with the 2020-21 Single Star Award for Councillor Development.
The annual Star Award demonstrates a council’s commitment to delivering the best service possible to their community by enhancing Councillors’ knowledge of council processes and keeping up to date with current legislation in the sector.
A Single Star Award reflects 30 and 59% of individual Councillors having attended DAPTC’s training and events. West Moors Town Council has consistently achieved this having received four Star Awards over the past five years.
Commenting on their success, Neil Wedge, Chief Executive of DAPTC said ‘West Moors Town Council are amongst the first to always book their Councillors and colleagues on training, ensuring they take advantage of the latest information and best practice to use in their community. Training is particularly important in keeping those leading their communities relevant and at the forefront of making a difference locally. DAPTC congratulate West Moors Town Council on this great achievement.’
West Moors Town Council believes that basic induction training should not be the main form of provision and that training (‘member development’) should take place throughout a Councillor’s term of office.
Councillors have attended a variety of sessions. In August 2019 all Cllrs, whether new or not, participated in an interactive all-day, ‘Post Election’ training session. In the past 2 years, training has included ‘Important Planning Concepts’, ‘Roles of Councils in Planning’, ‘Planning’, ‘Equality and Diversity’, ‘Chairing Skills’, ‘Climate Emergency Advice’, ‘Finance’ and ‘Building a Two-Way Communication with Your Community’. A Councillor’s knowledge contributes greatly to strengthening the capacity of the council as a whole. Their role is complex and demanding but can also be enormously satisfying and personally rewarding. The role can be time-consuming, often more than it needs to be. Training enables council time to be more efficient and effective.
In addition to Councillors being equipped to make decisions on behalf of residents, it is important for staff to be as educated as possible in their role, in order to facilitate the needs of the community and the Council. CiLCA (Certificate in Local Council Administration) is designed to cover all aspects of the Clerk's role and learners are required to compile a portfolio of evidence to show they fully understand their job. Since September 2019, West Moors Town Council has boasted a CiLCA qualified Assistant to the Clerk as well as a fully qualified Clerk and RFO (who attends regular webinars, annual conferences and much more).
The opportunities to make life easier for today’s citizens whilst leaving a legacy of public service for future generations, is made greater, with the benefit of training.