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Complaints Policy and Procedure

Adopted 05 January 2022 (FC22/010)


  1. What is a complaint
  2. What is not a complaint
  3. Influencing Council decision making
  4. How to complain
  5. Contacts


Gainsborough Town Council is committed to providing a quality service for the benefit of the people who live or work in its area or are visitors to the locality.  If you are dissatisfied with the standard of service you have received from this Council or are unhappy about an action or lack of action by this Council, this Complaints Procedure sets out how you may complain to the council and how we shall try to resolve your complaint. 

What is a complaint

This Complaints Procedure applies to complaints about Council administration and procedures and may include complaints about how council employees have dealt with your concerns.   

What is not a complaint

This Complaints Procedure does not apply to:  

2.1 Complaints by one Council employee against another Council employee, or between a Council employee and the Council as employer. These matters are dealt with under the Council’s disciplinary and grievance procedures.   

2.2 Complaints against councillors.  Complaints against councillors are covered by the Code of Conduct for Members adopted by the Council on 06/04/2022 and, if a complaint against a councillor is received by the Council, it will be referred to the Monitoring Officer of West Lindsey District Council.  Further information on the process of dealing with complaints against councillors may be obtained from the Monitoring Officer of West Lindsey District Council.

Influencing Council decision making

The appropriate time for influencing Council decision-making is by raising your concerns before the Council debates and votes on a matter. You may do this by writing to the Council in advance of the meeting at which the item is to be discussed. Written representation must be received by the Clerk seven clear days before a scheduled meeting in order to allow sufficient time to prepare the necessary reports and add items to the agenda. There may also be the opportunity to raise your concerns in the public participation section of Council meetings. If you are unhappy with a Council decision, you may raise your concerns with the Council, but Standing Orders prevent the Council from re-opening issues for six months from the date of the decision, unless there are exceptional grounds to consider this necessary and the special process set out in the Standing Orders is followed.

How to complain

4.1 You may make your complaint about the Council’s procedures or administration to the Clerk.  You may do this in person, by phone, or by writing to or emailing the Clerk.  The addresses and numbers are set out below. Anonymous complaints or complaints from un-identifiable email addresses will only be considered in exceptional circumstances. Your name and address will not normally be shared and your personal details will be handled in line with the council’s privacy policies.

4.2 Wherever possible, the Clerk will try to resolve your complaint immediately.  If this is not possible, the Clerk will normally try to acknowledge your complaint within 10 working days. 

4.3 If you do not wish to report your complaint to the Clerk, you may make your complaint directly to the Chairman of the Council who will report your complaint to the to the Council.

4.4 The Clerk or the relevant committee of the Council or the Full Council (as appropriate) will investigate each complaint, obtaining further information as necessary from you and/or from staff or members of the Council. 

4.5 The Clerk or the Chairman of the relevant committee or of Full Council will notify you within 25 working days of the outcome of your complaint and of what action (if any) the Council proposes to take as a result of your complaint.  (In exceptional cases the twenty-five working days timescale may have to be extended.  If it is, you will be kept informed.) 

4.6 If you are dissatisfied with the response to your complaint, you may ask for your complaint to be referred to the full Council and (usually within eight weeks) you will be notified in writing of the outcome of the review of your original complaint.  The decision of the Full Council is final.   


The Clerk to Gainsborough Town Council:

By post: Richmond House, Richmond Park, Morton Terrace, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
DN21 2RJ

By Email:

The Chairman of Gainsborough Town Council

By post: Richmond House, Richmond Park, Morton Terrace, Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
DN21 2RJ

By Email: Please check current details on the Councils website: Mayor and Deputy Mayor – Gainsborough Town Council (