Your Roles in the Council
Serving on a National Park Authority
There are three national park authorities in Wales, Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast and Snowdonia. National park authorities are composed of members from local authorities who have land within the park. Councillors are appointed according to political balance, although consideration is also given to having wards within the park and commitment to park purposes. These local authorities receive funding from the Welsh Government to make a financial contribution to the running of the park. In addition to local elected members, the Welsh Government appoints several members who may have experience or specialist knowledge of a subject such as, the environment, tourism, farming or community work. They are appointed through a recruitment process, and all vacancies are advertised publicly. Terms of office for local authority members and Welsh Government appointees are for 4 years, with a maximum of 10 years’ total service for appointees.
Members of the national park authority act as advocates of the national park authority and its purpose of conserving and enhancing the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the area, promoting opportunities for public enjoyment and understanding of the special qualities of the national park. They have a duty to foster the economic and social well-being of communities living in the national park. As a national park member, you would be expected to:
- Make decisions and oversee performance through participation in authority meetings.
- Represent the interests of all residents of the national park.
- Represent the national park authority on outside bodies.
- Promote and support good governance of the national park authority; and promote and support its services.
While serving on a national park authority, members are expected to represent the interests of the park rather than their principal authority. As a national park authority member, you will be expected to participate fully in the park’s induction and continuing development programmes to help you make an effective contribution.
There is a protocol which has been agreed between the National Park Authorities, WLGA and Welsh Government regarding the appointment of councillors to park authorities.