Skip to content

Comments and complaints

Types of complaints

The public is entitled and encouraged to contact the Council and to receive replies. Contacts may comprise comments, representations on planning applications, criticisms of a policy which the Council has adopted, information useful to the Council, requests for services or formal complaints.

What is a complaint?

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction that requires a response, about the standards of service, action or lack of action by the Council, its staff or a contractor or other organisation working on the Council’s behalf affecting an individual resident/customer or group of residents/ customers.

The following are not complaints:

  • comments, favourable or unfavourable, where you do not wish to take the matter further
  • reports of a single breach of a service standard, e.g. one missed collection of a dustbin
  • "statutory" representations in connection with planning applications, licensing applications, local development schemes and documents, or formal consultation exercises
  • representations concerning matters where you have a right to appeal, e.g. to the Magistrates' Court or to the Secretary of State, against a decision which the Council has taken or where a right to appeal has been exercised by someone else
  • concerns regarding matters which are the responsibility of another body, e.g. highways (West Sussex County Council) or health matters (NHS)
  • criticisms of a policy adopted by the Council
  • the supply of information concerning breaches of regulatory control, e.g. breaches of planning control or fly tipping
  • requests for services, an explanation of decisions taken or for information under, e.g. the Freedom of Information Act 2000 or the Data Protection Act 2018