Powers and Duties of Town and Parish Councils

Felixstowe Town Council has a variety of responsibilities, duties (the things that it must do), and powers (the things that it may do). All these are laid down in Acts of Parliament. A list of Town Council powers and duties is provided below.

Allotments

Powers & Duties: Powers to provide allotments.
Duty to provide allotment gardens if demanded unsatisfied
Statutory Provisions: Small Holding & Allotments Act 1908, ss. 23, 26, & 42

Baths and Washhouses

Powers & Duties: Power to provide public baths and washhouses
Statutory Provisions: Public Health At 1936, Ss 221, 222, 223 & 227

Burial grounds, cemeteries and crematoria

Powers & Duties: Power to acquire and maintain
Power to provide
Power to agree to maintain monuments and memorials
Power to contribute towards expenses of cemeteries
Statutory Provisions: Open Spaces Act 1906, Ss 9 and 10; Local Government Act 1972, s. 214; Parish Councils and Burial Authorities (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1970, s.1 Local Government Act 1972, s. 215(6)

Bus Shelters

Powers & Duties: Power to provide and maintain shelters
Statutory Provisions: Local Government (Miscellaneous Provision) Act 1953, s. 4

Bye Laws

Powers & Duties: Power to make bye-laws in regard to pleasure grounds,
Cycle Parks
Baths and Washhouses
Open spaces and burial grounds
Mortuaries and post-mortem rooms
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1875, s. 164
Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, s.57(7)
Public Health Act 1936, s.223
Open Spaces Act 1906, s.15
Public Health Act 1936, s.198

Charities

Powers & Duties: Duty to receive accounts of parochial charities
Statutory Provisions: Charities Act 1960, s.32

 

Clocks

Powers & Duties: Power to provide public clocks
Statutory Provisions: Parish Councils Act 1957, s.2

Closed Churchyards

Powers & Duties: Powers as to maintenance
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.215

Commons and common pastures

Powers & Duties: Powers in relation to enclosure, as to regulation and management, and as to providing common pasture
Statutory Provisions: Enclosure Act 1845;
Local Government Act 1894, s.8(4);
Smallholdings and Allotments Act 1908, s.34

Conference facilities

Powers & Duties: Power to provide and encourage the use of facilities
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.144

Community centres

Powers & Duties: Power to provide and equip buildings for use of clubs having athletic, social or educational objectives
Statutory Provisions: Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 s.19

Crime prevention

Powers & Duties: Powers to spend money on various crime prevention measures
Statutory Provisions: Local Government and Rating Act 1997, s.31

Drainage

Powers & Duties: Power to deal with ponds and ditches
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1936, s.260

Education

Powers & Duties: Right to appoint school governors
Statutory Provisions: Education (No.2) Act 1986, s.4

Entertainment and the arts

Powers & Duties: Provision of entertainment and support of the arts
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.145

Gifts

Powers & Duties: Power to accept
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.139

Highways

Powers & Duties: Power to repair and maintain public footpaths and bridle-ways. Power to light roads and public places
Provision of litter bins
Power to provide parking places for vehicles, bicycles and motor-cycles. Power to enter into agreement as to dedication and widening. Power to provide roadside seats and shelters, and omnibus shelters. Consent of parish council required for ending maintenance of highway at public expense, or for stopping up or diversion of highway. Power to complain to district council as to protection of rights of way and roadside wastes
Power to provide traffic signs and other notices
Power to plant trees etc. and to maintain roadside verges
Statutory Provisions: Highways Act 1980, ss.43,50
Parish Councils Act 1957, s.3;
Highways Act 1980, s.301
Litter Act 1983, ss.5,6
Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, ss.57,63
Highways Act 1980, ss.30,72
Parish Councils Act 1957, s.1
Highways Act 1980, ss.47,116
Highways Act 1980, s.130
Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, s.72
Highways Act 1980, s.96

Investments

Powers & Duties: Power to participate in schemes of collective investment
Statutory Provisions: Trustee Investments Act 1961, s.11

Land

Powers & Duties: Power to acquire by agreement, to appropriate, to dispose of
Power to accept gifts of land
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, ss.124, 126, 127
Local government Act 1972, s.139

Litter

Powers & Duties: Power as to the provision of receptacles
Statutory Provisions: Litter Act 1983, ss.5,6

Lotteries

Powers & Duties: Powers to promote
Statutory Provisions: Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976, s.7

Mortuaries and post mortem rooms

Powers & Duties: Powers to provide mortuaries and post mortem rooms
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1936, s.198

Nuisances

Powers & Duties: Power to deal with offensive ditches
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1936, s.260

Open spaces

Powers & Duties: Power to acquire land and maintain
Statutory Provisions: Public health Act 1875, s.164
Open Spaces Act 1906, ss.9 and 10

Parish Property and documents

Powers & Duties: Powers to direct as to their custody
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.226

Postal and telecommunications facilities

Powers & Duties: Power to pay the Post Office, British Telecommunications or any other public telecommunications operator any loss sustained providing post or telegraph office or telecommunication facilities
Statutory Provisions: Post Office Act 1953, s.51;
Telecommunications Act 1984, s.97

Public buildings and village hall

Powers & Duties: Power to provide buildings for offices and for public meetings and assemblies
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.133

Public Conveniences

Powers & Duties: Power to provide
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1936, s.87

Recreation

Powers & Duties: Power to acquire land for or to provide recreation grounds, public walks, pleasure grounds and open spaces and to manage and control them
Power to provide gymnasiums, playing fields, holiday camps
Provision of boating pools
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1875, s.164
Local Government Act 1972, Sched.14 para.27
Public Health Acts Amendment Act 1890 s.44
Open Spaces Act 1906, ss.9 and 10
Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, s.19
Public Health Act 1961, s.54

Town and Country Planning

Powers & Duties: Right to be notified of planning applications
Statutory Provisions: Town and Country Planning Act 1990, Sched.1, para.8

Tourism

Powers & Duties: Power to contribute to organisations encouraging
Statutory Provisions: Local Government Act 1972, s.144

Traffic Calming

Powers & Duties: Powers to contribute financially to traffic calming schemes
Statutory Provisions: Local Government and Rating Act 1997, s.30

Transport

Powers & Duties: Powers to spend money on community transport schemes
Statutory Provisions: Local Government and Rating Act 1997, s.26-29

War memorials

Powers & Duties: Power to maintain, repairs, protect and adapt war memorials
Statutory Provisions: War Memorials (Local Authorities’ Powers) Act 1923, s.1; as extended by Local Government Act 1948, s.133

Water Supply

Powers & Duties: Power to utilise well, spring or stream and to provide facilities for obtaining water therefrom
Statutory Provisions: Public Health Act 1936, s.125

Section 137

In addition to the specific powers and duties listed above, Section 137 of the Local Government Act 1972 provides that Town Councils may spend money on any purpose which in its opinion is of direct benefit to all or part if its community. The total Council can spend under this general power must not in any financial year exceed an amount set by the Secretary of State. This is calculated as a set amount per elector in the Parish and is indexed annually in line with the RPI (Retail Price Index). For the year 2015/16 the limit is £7.36 per elector.