Parish Council Finance

Sources of  funding  for  parish  councils  can come  from  a number of sources - including loans, revenue from providing services (such as hire charges or rent), grants and being paid to deliver/provide services on behalf of other public bodies. However, the bulk of a parish council's income typically comes from the precept.

The Precept and Budgeting

The precept is the local tax levied by the Parish Council which is collected on its behalf by the Rating Authority (Rother District Council). The Parish Council calculates the precept annually - usually in January - by preparing a budget for the following financial year (April-March). In determining the precept a parish council would normally take into account: its actual and forecast income and expenditure to the year end; inflationary trends; the general economic climate; its reserve levels; planned or desired activities (which may include 'actions' within the Local Action Plan) and the likely costs of maintaining assets.

Annual Accounts

Click here for the last approved Statement of Accounts.


Like other public bodies the Parish Council is audited annually by the Audit Commission. Currently, this function is undertaken on the Commission's behalf by PKFLittlejohn. Every year, the Parish Council completes and submits an Annual Governanace & Accountability Return (AGAR) which comprises a summary of the Council's receipts and payments; a statement that the Council has discharged satisfactorily its regulatory obligations - and the external auditor's opinion.

AGAR 2018-19 

Community Grants

The Parish Council provides grants to community/voluntary/not-for-profit groups if, by so doing, parishioners would benefit in some way. Applications may be submitted at any time using this form.

Examples of successful applications include:

  • Staplecross Village Hall - £1,030 towards a baby changing unit, new cupboards and a new carpet
  • Ewhurst & Staplecross Bonfire Society - £300 towards Staplecross Bonfire
  • Ewhurst Parochial Church Council - £2,000 towards churchyard maintenance and £500 towards the distribution of Parish News
  • Ewhurst, Staplecross & Bodiam Garden Society - £75 for the Young Gardeners' Club
  • Staplecross MCP School - £2,000 towards a Multi Use Games Area (MUGA)
  • Victim Support - £50 to support victims of - and witnesses to - crimes