Which council does what?

I quite often get asked, “which council should I go to” for this and that, so I thought it may be useful to set out the main responsibilities of each council once again, particularly for new residents recently moving into New Milton or its surrounding areas.

Firstly, there is your very local town or parish council.  They have a local office in the town or village from where a town or parish clerk and team work (although New Milton Town Council also have a New Forest District Council officer sitting in their local town office to help with District Council matters such as benefits, council tax payments, ‘buying a parking clock’ etc).  Parish and town councils maintain recreation and sports grounds and pavilions and other local amenities.  They tend to lead on youth projects and are consultees on planning applications.  They also work with local police on matters of concern to residents locally.  

Secondly, there is New Forest District Council.  Their main offices are in Lyndhurst at Appletree Court.  NFDC employs officers who are experts in the District Council’s areas of responsibility.  These include planning applications (household and larger sites, including the Local Plan), waste and recycling collection, coastal protection and flooding, housing, benefits administration, environmental health and noise nuisance, pest control, dog warden, and oversight of our leisure centres.

New Forest District Council largely surrounds the New Forest National Park (based in Lymington Town Hall), which is governed by its own National Park Authority and has its own set of planning rules, given it has many environmentally sensitive areas and listed buildings. Other council services within the National Park are provided by the District Council.

Lastly, there is the largest council, Hampshire County Council, with its main offices in Winchester at Elizabeth II Court and its council chamber at The Great Hall.  Hampshire County Council serves all residents from the south coast up to Basingstoke.  It is responsible for children’s services (education, safeguarding and children in care, building schools), adult services (care for the elderly and those with disabilities), public health (e.g. leading the Covid response across the county, for example), mental health services, sexual health services, addiction services, school nurses and health visitors, scrutiny of NHS health services across Hampshire), Hampshire Highways (roads, drainage, flood response), public transport, leading on climate change action across Hampshire, economic development across the county, disposal of waste and processing of recycled items, the running of Hampshire libraries, museums, country parks and farms, registration of births, deaths and marriages, minerals and quarry planning.

I hope this gives new residents, and maybe some existing residents, an overview of the councils serving you. If you want to find out something specific, visit your councils’ websites, all easily found online. There is a wealth of information on those websites. You can also contact your District and County councillors and MP here by putting in your postcode: www.writetothem.com.

Fran-Carpenter-May-2018-photoCllr Fran Carpenter
Hampshire County Council
New Milton North, Milford & Hordle Division
07867-502624 / 01425-614665