A special Charter, which recognises Woking Borough Council's commitment to developing and supporting its local councillors, was presented to the Mayor of Woking, Cllr Will Forster, during a Council meeting held on Wednesday 13 February 2019.
Cllr Rory Love, Chairman of South East Employers, presented the South East Charter for Elected Member Development in recognition of the Council's continued efforts to ensure that its councillors have the knowledge and support that they require to carry out their role as community leaders.
During September 2018, an in-depth review reassessing the Council's arrangements for member development was undertaken by South East Employers to determine whether the Council had progressed sufficiently over the past three years to justify extending its Charter status. It is the fourth time Woking Borough Council has attained this nationally recognised standard in the past 11 years.
At the presentation, Cllr Love, said: “Councils are discovering new ways of working. They are working differently, requiring new skills as they engage and empower their local communities. It has therefore never been more important that elected members have the tools, the skills, and the support to engage, to empower, to represent, and to set the direction of travel for this authority.
“The assessors particularly noted the strong commitment to member development. It was clear that this commitment has the support of the whole council and has been well led by the Member Learning and Development Lead Councillors, who provide representation of each of the four political groups.
“The Council has demonstrated to the Charter Assessment team a high degree of innovation and the ability to get the best and most efficient use from the member development budget.
Cllr Colin Kemp, Woking Borough Council’s Lead Member for Elected Member Learning and Development, said: "We are delighted to have maintained our Charter status again. This clearly demonstrates that the Council continues its commitment to the development of elected members by providing the skills and knowledge to better represent the residents of this Borough."