Parish Council Powers

Note – this is not an exhaustive list, but provides the key powers attributable to the Parish Council.

Function Powers & Duties
Statutory Provisions



Duty to provide allotments.
Power to improve and adapt land for
allotments, and to let grazing rights
Small Holding & Allotments
Act 1908, ss. 23, 26, and 42

Baths and washhouses Power to provide public baths and
Public Health Act 1936, ss.
221, 222, 223 and 227

Burial grounds, cemeteries and
Power to acquire and maintain
Power to provide
Power to agree to maintain
monuments and memorials
Power to contribute towards
expenses of cemeteries
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.

Bus shelters Power to provide and maintain
Local Government
(Miscellaneous Provision) Act
1953, s. 4

Bye-laws 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
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

Clocks Power to provide public clocks Parish Councils Act 1957, s.2

Closed churchyards Powers as to maintenance Local Government Act 1972,

Common pastures Powers in relation to providing
common pasture
Smallholdings and Allotments
Act 1908, s.34

Conference facilities Power to provide and encourage the
use of facilities
Local Government Act 1972,

Community centres Power to provide and equip
buildings for use of clubs having
athletic, social or recreational
Local Government
(Miscellaneous Provisions) Act
1976 s.19

Crime prevention Powers to install and maintain
equipment and establish and
maintain a scheme for detection or
prevention of crime
Power to contribute to police
services e.g. PCSO’s
Duty on Parish Councils to consider
crime reduction in every policy and
Local Government and Rating
Act 1997, s.31
Police Act 1996, s92
S17 Crime and Disorder Act
1998 (as amended)

Drainage Power to deal with ponds and
Public Health Act 1936, s.260

Entertainment and the arts Provision of entertainment and
support of the arts
Local Government Act 1972,

Flyposting and Graffiti Power to take enforcement action
against those that flypost or graffiti
Cleaner Neighbourhoods and
Environment Act 2005

Gifts Power to accept Local Government Act 1972,

Highways Power to maintain footpaths and
Power to light roads and public
Provision of litter bins
Powers to provide parking places for
bicycles and motor-cycles, and
other vehicles
Power to enter into agreement as to
dedication and widening
Power to provide roadside seats
and 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 highway
authority as to unlawful stopping up
or obstruction of highway or
unlawful encroachment on roadside
Power to provide traffic signs and
other objects or devices warning of
Power to plant trees and lay out
grass verges etc. and to maintain
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 Power to participate in schemes of
collective investment
Trustee Investments Act 1961,

Land Power to acquire by agreement, to
appropriate, to dispose of
Power to accept gifts of land
Local Government Act 1972,
ss.124, 126, 127
Local Government Act 1972,


Provision of receptacles

Litter Act 1983, ss.5,6

Lotteries Powers to promote Lotteries and Amusements Act
1976, s.7

Mortuaries and post mortem
Powers to provide mortuaries and
post mortem rooms
Public Health Act 1936, s.198

Open spaces Power to acquire land and maintain Public Health Act 1875, s.164
Open Spaces Act 1906, ss.9
and 10

Parish documents Powers to direct as to their custody Local Government Act 1972,

Telecommunications facilities


Power to pay public
telecommunications operators any
loss sustained providing
telecommunication facilities
Telecommunications Act 1984,

Public buildings and village hall Power to provide buildings for public
meetings and assemblies
Local Government Act 1972,

Sustainable Communities Able to be represented on a panel of
representatives to be consulted on
proposals that would contribute to
sustainable communities
Sustainable Communities Act

Town and country planning Right to be notified of planning
Town and Country Planning
Act 1990, Sched.1, para. 8

Tourism Power to encourage visitors and
provide conference and other
Local Government Act 1972,

Traffic calming Powers to contribute financially to
traffic calming schemes
Highways Act 1980, s.274A

Transport Powers in relation to car-sharing
schemes, taxi fare concessions and
information about transport
Powers to make grants for bus
Local Government and Rating
Act 1997, s.26, 28 and 29
Transport Act 1985, s.106A

War memorials Power to maintain, repair, protect
and alter war memorials
War Memorials
Authorities’ Powers) Act 1923,
s.1; as extended by Local
Government Act 1948, s.133

Water supply Power to utilise well, spring or
stream and to provide facilities for
obtaining water from them
Public Health Act 1936, s.125

Well-Being Power to well-being of the area (for
eligible councils)
s2 and 4 of the Local
Government Act 2000 (as
amended by Part 4 of the
Local Government and Public
Involvement in Health Act

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