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New Town Clerk for Weymouth announced

Jane Biscombe

Published at 1:10pm 20th September 2018.

Jane Biscombe has been announced as the new Town Clerk for Weymouth Town Council.

Jane was offered the role after a rigorous recruitment exercise and will take up her role full time in January 2019.

She starts in a part time capacity from November.

Although the Town Council will not officially come into being until April 2019, Jane will be closely involved in managing the project to set up Weymouth’s new Town Council.

This will include supporting the first elections to the new council in May next year and developing its strategic plan.

Speaking about her appointment, Jane said:

"I’m delighted to have been chosen for this exciting role and am really looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead in setting up a brand new council for Weymouth, and taking forward the town’s ambitious regeneration programme.

"I’m a people, project and change manager, with extensive experience in local government, governance and service delivery.

"Weymouth has a fantastic natural setting with so much potential and I can’t wait to lead the town council through these exciting times of challenge and opportunity."

Jane brings a wealth of experience to the role. She has been a Town Clerk and Responsible Financial Officer for over three years and is CiLCA qualified.

Working as the Town Clerk for Yateley Town Council in Hampshire since 2015, she was awarded the title of New Clerk of the Year in 2017 by the Society of Local Council Clerks. This is the body that recognises professional excellence amongst parish clerks.

Having joined Surrey County Council as a youth worker at the age of 18, Jane has worked for five district, borough and county councils.

She has worked in service areas as diverse as community development, committee management and governance, highways, adult social care, project and change management and organisational development.

A nationwide recruitment campaign led by the Local Government Resource Centre took place over the summer to find the right Town Clerk for Weymouth.

Over twenty applications were received for the position. Six candidates were initially shortlisted for the post and, over two days of tests, activities, interviews and presentations, this was whittled down to three outstanding candidates.

Cllr Alison Reed, Weymouth & Portland Borough Council briefholder for Corporate Affairs and Continuous Improvement said:

"We’re absolutely delighted to have found such a bright and energetic Town Clerk for Weymouth and confident we have made the right choice.

"Jane has a fantastic track record as a clerk and is someone who, I am sure, will build a positive relationship with councillors and residents to deliver on our aspirations for the town.

"We can’t wait to get started. In preparation for Jane’s arrival we are setting up a shadow Town Council to provide support and strategic advice."

Weymouth’s Town Clerk will be responsible for setting up one of the largest town councils in England and Wales. The new town council is likely to have a budget of around £2.5m and employ up to 50 staff.

A key requirement of the role is to provide strong leadership and build a wide range of positive working relationships with councillors, the council’s workforce and partner organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors.

The town clerk will initially work with Weymouth’s ‘shadow’ Town Council to create the new council on 1 April 2019.

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