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Wiltshire Council looks to plunder parish precepts

November 27, 2018 8:22 PM

Your WC is advancing its policy of shunting costs onto parish councils. Communities will be told they either have to take on the responsibility of running things like recreation fields and play areas, or watch them decay as WC ceases to maintain them.

However the transfers may yet be held up by the lack of capacity in the WC legal department. Here's the official line from your WC:

Parish councils have opportunity to make services more local

A scheme that will help communities take on the ownership and running of play areas, allotments and other facilities in their local area is being introduced in Wiltshire.

Wiltshire Council already has a major programme of work with towns and larger parish councils to devolve services and transfer assets so they can be locally owned, run and delivered.

That scheme is well under way and follows the successful handover of services & assets to Salisbury City Council last year.

Now a similar scheme will be introduced for smaller communities, which are keen to take on local facilities. It would run in tandem with the programme to transfer assets to larger communities.

Richard Clewer, cabinet member for corporate services, said: "Local communities know their areas best and many have expressed interest in taking over and running some facilities.

"Locally run services create significant opportunities to create stronger, more cohesive and sustainable communities and enhance the role of town and parish councils."

Assets that could be considered include:

  • Cemeteries
  • Allotments
  • Recreation fields in small parishes
  • Public conveniences - except where they are part of a wider holding
  • Play areas

The proposals were agreed at cabinet on 27 November.