What powers and duties do parish councils have? Parish councils have more formal powers to do things than are often suspected.
The following are all under the remit of a parish council:
· Burial Grounds, Cemeteries, Churchyards and Crematoria
· Bus Shelters
· Bye-laws – the power to make bye-laws concerning:baths and washhouses (swimming pools), cycle parks, mortuaries and pleasure grounds
· Clocks – public clocks can be provided and must be maintained
· Community Centres, Conference Centres, Halls, Public Buildings
· Drainage – of ditches and ponds
· Entertainment and the Arts
· General Spending – parish councils can spend a limited amount of money on anything they deem of benefit to the community that is not covered by the other specific responsibilities described in this list
· Gifts – parish councils may accept gifts
· Highways – lighting, parking places, right to enter into discussions about new roads and road widening, consent of parish council required for diversion or discontinuation of highway, traffic signs and other notices, tree planting and verge maintenance . Power to repair and maintain public footpaths & bridle-ways Power to light roads & public places 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 & shelters Power to complain to district councils regarding 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
· Land – acquisition and sale of
· Legal proceedings – power to prosecute and defend any legal proceedings in the interests of the community, power to take part in any public enquiry
· Litter – provision of litter-bins and support for any anti-litter campaigns
· Planning – parish councils must be notified of, and display for residents, any planning applications for the area. Any comments submitted to the planning authority by the parish council must be taken into account. Parish Councils do not have power to grant or refuse planning permission. The Local Government Act 1972, section 101 does however, require local authorities to consult parish councils on certain matters affecting their parish and a parish council is a statutory consultee on the development plan, local plans and structure plans.
· Postal and Telecommunication Facilities – power to pay a public telecommunications operator any loss sustained in providing services in that area
· Public conveniences – provision and maintenance of public toilets
· Recreation – provision of recreation grounds, public walkways, pleasure grounds, open spaces, village greens, gymnasiums, playing fields, holiday camps and boating ponds
· Rights of Way – footpath and bridleway maintenance
· Seats (public)
· Signs – danger signs, place names and bus stops signs
· Tourism – financial contributions to any local tourist organisations allowed
· Traffic Calming
· War Memorials
· Water Supply – power to utilise stream, well or spring water and to provide facilities for general use.
Anston Parish Council can also discuss anything that affects the community, directly or indirectly. As the democratic representative body for the parish they could influence decisions made by others.