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Town and Parish Councils

In addition to Dover District Council, everyone living in the district is served by one of 35 town or civic parish councils. There are 32 parish councils and 3 town councils (Deal, Dover and Sandwich) covering the district. The town and parish councils provide many local services and as the third tier of local government speak on behalf of their communities. They vary greatly in size, with a town council covering tens of thousands of people and providing a wide range of services whilst the smallest parish council can have only a few hundred people and provide a very limited number of services. 

Parish Councils

Parish Councils usually do not maintain a permanent office or full time staff. However, the part-time nature should not be taken as any indication of the effectiveness and efficiency of the council, as parish councils usually work very hard for their local community and can provide a wide range of services.

Town Councils

Town Councils are in effect large parish councils, but whereas the parish council head is referred to as the 'Chairman' the town council's head is a 'Town Mayor'. The laws governing town councils are the same as for parish councils. In the district, there are three town councils - Deal, Dover and Sandwich. The town councils each maintain a permanent office with a small staff.

Parish Clerks

Town and Parish Councils will appoint a Clerk to carry out and record the council's decisions and other staff as necessary. Councils have to meet at least four times a year, including the Annual General Meeting plus the annual parish or town meeting where they can be questioned by their local electors. The meetings of town and parish councils must admit the public although for certain restricted items they may exclude them. The agendas for the meetings will indicate if any items are to be considered as a restricted item.

Dover District Town and Parish Conference

From time-to-time the district council holds a conference involving the district's town and parish councils.

Contact Democratic Support

For questions concerning a specific Town or Parish Council please contact the Town or Parish Clerk. For questions concerning these web pages please contact Democratic Support on the details below. 

Email: democratic.services@dover.gov.uk