Community governance reviews

Community governance reviews allow us to look at and make changes to local democratic arrangements.

We can decide to hold a review ourselves, or they can be triggered by people submitting a petition to us.

The review can look at the whole district or just part of it, and can think about any of the following:

  • Creating, merging, changing or getting rid of parishes or town councils.
  • Naming, style and the electoral arrangements for parishes and town councils; including the year of election, number of council members and the wards.
  • Grouping parishes together under a common parish council, or splitting up parishes.

We must make sure the governance under review reflects the identities and interests of the community in that area, as well as being effective and helpful.

Every review must take into account the size, population and boundaries of that community or parish, as well as the impact any changes might have.

The role of town and parish councils

Town and parish councils are the most local form of government. They collect money from council tax payers - known as a 'precept' - to invest in their area and improve services and facilities.

Examples of the services they might look after include:

  • Allotments
  • Maintaining parks and open spaces
  • Bus shelters and community transport
  • Community centres and leisure facilities
  • Crime reduction and community safety
  • Festivals, events and tourism
  • Litter bins, street cleaning and street lights

They can be the voice of the community, and will work with other levels of local government and local organisations to coordinate and look after services and work to improve quality of life in their area.

Whitstable community governance review

We're consulting on a review to set up a town council for Whitstable.

Have your say on the Whitstable community governance review

You must submit any comments by 5pm on Friday 1 March.

A report on all the feedback we get will be submitted to the committee and council in April. Councillors will look at the initial consultation results and decide what to recommend.

You will then have the chance to comment on a second round of consultation before we make our final recommendations. The deadline for the review to be completed is December 2024.