The Town Council

Background

The Town Council was created by the Local Government Reform Act of 1974 and held its inaugural meeting in April of that year when the elected members appointed their first Mayor - local shopkeeper Mr. Archie Smith.

West Mersea Town Council is the first of the three tiers of local government which comprise - Parish and Town Councils, Borough and District Councils and County Councils. Each tier is run independently, controlled by its own set of democratically elected councillors. Town and Parish Councils promote the interests of local people. Our Town Councillors are volunteers who do not receive any payment (other than travel expenses) and offer their time voluntarily for the benefit of the community.

What do we do?

The duties of a Town Council are varied. It has powers which are granted by Act of Parliament. The Council responds to many consultation papers, and lobbies other bodies on important matters on behalf of the local community. Town Councillors are also appointed to represent the Council on various local groups and organisations. The Town Council ensures that local views are made known at Borough and County levels. West Mersea Town Council is not a planning authority but it makes recommendations on local planning matters to Colchester Borough Council Planning Department. The Town Council provides and maintains cemeteries, playgrounds, sports pavilions and sports grounds etc. The Council manages and maintains public open spaces owned by the Town and also maintains land leased to the Council including Village Greens.

How Is It All Paid for?

The Town Council is empowered to raise a Precept - a portion of Council Tax - through Colchester Borough Council to fund its activities. The Precept is collected by the Borough on behalf of the Town Council. Details of the amounts charged for each Council Tax band are itemised on your Council Tax Bill.