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Powers of Ramsgate Town Council

There is a great deal of information about the powers that Ramsgate Town Council will have from the outset. The following is the statutory powers it will have from day 1.

 Parish and town councils are at the grass roots of local community democracy and are the first tier of local government. Through increased government commitment and recognition by other organisations and key stakeholders, parish and town councils are now at the forefront of renewed community democracy.

Through partnership working with principal authorities and the opportunity to achieve Quality Status, parish and town councils can continue to develop their role, not just as the voice of local communities, but as a facilitator and provider of better services.

Over 150 new parish and town councils have been created since 1997 as communities all over the country take greater control over their local affairs and decisions that affect their lives.



Allotments Power to provide allotment gardens and duty to do so if demanded by local electors

Appointment of Officers Power to appoint officers to discharge any function of the parish council as directed by it, nearly always a parish clerk and sometimes a neighbourhood manager, linesmen, village sweeper and other workers

Bathing Places and Wash Houses - Power to provide swimming baths, public bathing places and wash houses (including laundrettes)

Burial Grounds, Cemeteries and Crematoria - Power to provide such grounds or facilities

Bus Stops and Shelters - Power to provide bus stops and shelters

Bye Laws - Power to enact bye laws regarding pleasure grounds, cycle parks, baths and wash houses, open spaces and mortuaries.

Charities Power to act as trustee of any parochial charities serving the parish and duty to receive the accounts of such charities

Clocks -  Power to provide public clocks

Closed churchyards -  Power to maintain closed churchyards

Commons -  Power to regulate and maintain commons

Community Facilities - Power to provide such facilities for the use of local individuals, community groups and societies

Conference Facilities - Power to provide such facilities

Crime Prevention  -  Power to take steps to prevent crime, such as installing CCTV, requiring and paying for additional policing of the parish, installing burglar alarms and strong locks, and assisting neighbourhood watch schemes

Delivery of Local Authority Services Right to act as an agent for the local district or borough, county or unitary authority and deliver nearly any services or amenities that would otherwise be provided for the parish by that local authority

Drainage  -  Power to deal with ponds and ditches

Education  -  Power to appoint representation to the governing body of any primary school serving the parish

Entertainment and the Arts  -  Power to provide entertainments and support the arts

Free Resource  -  Power to spend a limited amount of money as set by the Secretary of State on anything the parish council deems to be of benefit for the parish or its inhabitants

Gifts  -  Power to accept gifts on behalf of the parish

Highways  -  Power to maintain public footpaths, light roads and public places, provide litter bins, provide parking for vehicles, to acquire rights of way, provide traffic signs and other notices, and to give or withhold consent as to the stopping up or diversion of any public highway

Investments  -  Power to participate in schemes of collective investment

Land  -  Power to compulsory purchase land in certain circumstances and to establish new rights of way

Litter  -  Power to provide litter bins and similar facilities

Lotteries -   Power to provide a lottery within the parish

National Parks  -  Right to have representation appointed onto the authority of any National Park the parish falls under

Open Spaces -   Power to acquire land

Parish Property and Documents Duty to manage and hold any property and public documents on behalf of the parish

Planning Applications  - Right to be notified and consulted regarding any planning applications affecting the parish

Public Building and Village Halls  -  Power to provide such buildings for public use

Public Conveniences  -  Power to provide such facilities

Recreation  -  Power to acquire land for recreation purposes and to provide sports and leisure facilities

School Governors  -  Power to appoint a Primary School Governor

Telecommunication Facilities  -  Power to require and pay a telephone company to provide additional public telephones

Tourism  -  Power to take steps to encourage local tourism

Town Declaration  -  Power to declare the parish to be a town, in which case the parish council becomes known as a town council, the chair and vice chair become the town mayor and deputy town mayor, and the parish clerk becomes the town clerk

Transport  -  Power to provide car sharing schemes, community mini buses and other transport for the benefit of the parish

Village Greens  -  Power to provide and duty to protect

War Memorials  -  Power to maintain war memorials

Water Supply -   Power to utilise any clean source to provide facilities for obtaining water, such as an parish pump



Folkestone Town Council applied for and received quality status within THREE years of its creation. There is no reason why Ramsgate should not achieve the same status within a similar time band.

This means that further powers may be patriated to Ramsgate Town Council as follows:

Examples of functions that might be considered for delegating to parish councils include:

control of markets 

 street cleaning

maintenance of highway verges, pavements and footpaths 

 litter collection and litter control 

 street lighting (other than on principal routes)

recycling measures

street naming

 parking restrictions 

 issue of bus and rail passes, and other transport voucher schemes 

 road safety measures

noise and nuisance abatement 

 tree preservation orders

some aspects of development control

some aspects of management of libraries and museums

some aspects of leisure and tourism provision

public conveniences

taxi and public entertainment licensing


"Having Quality status has helped the town council obtain substantial grant funding to take forward schemes to develop tourism, within the beautiful Eden Valley, and to improve the future sustainability of the High Street. The accreditation was the key to. convince funders to take our bids seriously. The council will be seeking re-accreditation to ensure its stake in future developments of devolved government. "

Christine Lane, Clerk to Edenbridge Town Council


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