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        The Parish Council is the first level of government, with representation closest to the electors. We deal with local issues which specifically affect Birchington.  All councillors must either work or live in or close by the village.

        Parish councillors receive no remuneration. They are all volunteers who willingly give their time and skills for the benefit of the village. The only paid staff member is Colette Coleman, our part time clerk. Unlike District and County councillors the Parish Councillors bring no political allegiances to their work.  All Council business is strictly controlled. Councillors must declare in writing any personal interest and abstain from debating and voting on matters which affect them or their families. The activities of the council are controlled by the law and our finances are regularly audited by the National Audit Commission.

Iris Bedwell

Parish Councillor since 1986.  Chairman of the Publicity Committee.  Resident in Birchington since marrying a local boy 65 years ago. A successful business woman in the Village for many years. Long serving Chairman/President of Birchington Chamber of Commerce and of the Carnival Association.                 


Jack Cohen

District Councillor since 1999 and elected to Parish in 2003.  Jack Cohen is a retired dental surgeon who spent his professional career in the School Dental Service, the NHS and the Regular Army.  Associated with East Kent all his life, he has a deep appreciation of the countryside and the importance of protecting our environment for future generations.  He is strong on law and order and a keen supporter of Neighbourhood Watch.


Dennis Cooper

Parish Councillor since 1997, Chairman of the Projects Committee and Vice Chairman of the Council. Retired diplomat associated with Birchington for thirty five years. Active in other local organisations, with strong interest in law and order (as Chairman of Thanet Neighbourhood Watch), special needs education and leisure facilities.


Julie Francis

Long serving Parish Councillor since 1986, Chairman of Planning Committee.  Former teacher with strong interest and involvement in local affairs, she is a former Chairman of the Thanet Area Association of Parish Councils and is a member of the Kent Association of Parish Councils.



John Garland

Parish Councillor since 1996, Chairman of the Council 2003 through 2006 and Chairman of Finance & Establishment Committee.  Retired Master Mariner. Believes strongly in importance of the Parish Council as the grassroots of democracy in the Village.  He has maintained a house in Birchington with his family for the past 35 years.


Roger Latchford

Elected to both Parish and District Councils in the 2003 elections.  Roger, who is the third generation of his family to live in Thanet, has recently disposed of his consultancy in Germany to live full time in the village.  He has worked in various countries around the world whilst serving in the army where he rose to the rank of Lt Colonel managing logistics.  He is keen to put something back into his family community.


Mike Pepper

Elected to Parish Council in 2003 elections.  Mike is a former telecom engineer who has lived locally for over twenty years.  He is interested in improving standards and the quality of village life whilst retaining Birchington`s friendly character.  



Margaret Sheldrick

Co-opted to Parish Council in 2002 and elected to both Parish and District Councils in 2003.  Margaret has moved to the village fairly recently from London where she was a member of a London Borough. She has a long association with Birchington and takes a keen interest in local government. She brings a valuable new perspective to the council.


Pamela Vilton

Pamela has been co-opted to the Parish Council in November 2005.  She lives in the village and manages a business in Station Road with her husband.  She is concerned about anti-social behaviour and supports the use of CCTV.  Other interests include the town planning process and youth activities.  She also intends to become more involved in Twinning and Carnival. 



Brian White

Brian was co-opted to the Parish Council in January  2004.  He has lived in the village since the early 90`s.  An engineer by profession, he has recently retired and is keen to “put something back” into the community.  He is  a prominent member and worker for the Royal British Legion and belongs to a number of other village organisations.